“I am signing none of the emails with an x”: a new poem by Kathryn Maris

“Affection is not a currency.”

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I am signing none of the emails with an “x” because
whatever affection he feels for me is not being
transferred. Affection is not a currency. I can’t
make him feel affection just as he is failing to make
me feel affection. I am anxious about my appointment
with the GP though I feel better than I did last year
and the year before. I arrived Saturday. The flight
was fine except for snafus at JFK: immigration queues,
misplaced bags, then my brother Orestes didn’t turn up
so I hailed a taxi. We got lost because I don’t know the way
from the Northern State Parkway. Dad scolded the driver
for lacking a GPS then gave him $100, which sums up
my dad: first the meanness and then the reward.


Kathryn Maris’s most recent poetry collection is God Loves You (Seren). Originally from New York, she now lives in London.

This article appears in the 23 June 2016 issue of the New Statesman, Divided Britain