Wednesday, 14 April 2021

Day 14: Name

Today's prompt was to write a poem about our names...


Strawberries and cream -
or so, I used to think.
All red and white and bluster,
a mallow softness at its centre.
After-breath of wistful reverie.

An Irish name that’s hard to say,
‘Sio’, like sionnach or sioc *-
something subtle, sleek;
and ‘bhán’ like white. Settling
on the tongue like a snowflake.

Another form of Joan, from
Greek and French descent,
(I like to picture Joan of Arc).
And the name (I proudly beam)
of many a Celtic queen from Irish mythology.

Always a fluster and a stutter
for non-English speakers.
Si Bonne,’ my favourite so far,
taken as literal compliment.
'Shove on,' a handy hint.

And don’t forget the fada please
(my pet peeve!)
That acute accent
like a doff of the hat,
a diagonal salute or tease.

Meaning the ‘grace of God’
an eloquent etymology that's dear -
but I was not named
for that. I was named
the Irish sounding version

of ‘Susan’; my maternal grandmother,
who was all things gracious
and graceful and more. Whose name,
even though she's not here
echoes on in mine.

*sionnach - fox; sioc - ice

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