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Steve Shepherd: a poem

christmas with haya

that year the oldest was away,

her boyfriend was in china teaching english

so they decided to celebrate in hong kong.

it was the first time one of the kids had opted-out

it felt significant.

then the middle one asked if her friend from college

could come instead.

haya couldn't go home because haya's home was syria.

we took family photos

sent them to hong kong

and laughed a lot.

on christmas day our guest

gave us a map, some postcards and spices

from her village

those spices made everything we cooked taste better,

for months.

Steve Shepherd writes poems and takes photographs. He used to make radio programmes, mostly jazz.

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