On Nazim Gafurri Street

by Lesley Saunders

“Silver is sold in the old quarter and is pretty good value”
 
The jeweller’s son is learning the trade well.
He picks out a fat silver pocket-watch.
It has an antlered stag engraved on its case
and he tells us it came from Scotland
 
one hundred years ago. We believe him.
But I like the look of a tarnished bracelet
and he lifts it and lays it on the glass counter
stroking it with his bandaged hand,
 
saying it once belonged to his grandmother.
His blue eyes do not even flicker.
I’m no good at haggling. When I hear
the word grandmother I see the links
 
of metal forget-me-nots, three generations
of a family’s men gone, the whole side
of a house open to the air, her blue dishes
trashed in the road. They flower on my wrist.