Poetry 12 June 2014 "Grip Stick": a new poem by Mark Granier Sign up for our weekly email * Print HTML The man emptying bins on the prom might be my age,though healthier looking, tanned, bare-armedin a hi-vis jacket and black ski-cap.He plucks at stray bits of litter with that familiarmetal rod with its Dalek pincer – the same as the one I bought for my mother in Fannin’ssome years before she died – a gadgetso starkly ingenious surely it’s a branchof a family tree of similar inventions, of Bakelite,whalebone, leather, wood . . . going back, back to that afternoon in her nursing homea year and a half ago, when I hold her handand feel it loosen then go slack, and callthe nurse, who says quietly “yes, she’s going . . .”and I look out the window to see the usual glorious rubbish, cloudsnot stopping their tumble over Killiney Hill’shuddle of slates and satellite dishes, while I amabruptly in a different country – the vastlandscape of her open palm – tiny in the grip of what gave way. Mark Granier is an Irish poet and photographer. He is author of three collections of poetry: Airborne, The Sky Road and Fade Street. His fourth, Haunt, will be published by Salmon Poetry in 2015. › Football’s murky economics, a quiet renationalisation and a fond farewell to a friend Subscribe from just £1 per issue This article first appeared in the 04 June 2014 issue of the New Statesman, 100 days to save Great Britain More Related articles How Wilson "Wicked" Pickett was his own worst enemy The hidden history of Catholics in Britain From white trash to the whitelash: what do white people want?