The Apres-ski Was Not What She Expected

by Annie Chance

She cocks her head to one side now to listen
when we speak, as she is partially deaf since
her skis hit a pine tree scattering steel stars…
and all the kings’ horses and all the kings’ men…  
Eggs all look the same but each one is as unique  
as a soldier in the Emperor Qin’s terracotta army.
Brown speckled eggs remind me of this daughter
with her freckles in summer, her pet name – Ming.
I am driving across North Wales to Holyhead
to catch the Dublin ferry. It’s a quiet evening,
on the back seat of the car sits two dozen eggs
free range, fresh, from our farm in Somerset.
My car hums loudly with the steady throb
of the rescue helicopter. I decelerate.
It was the second day of her skiing trip
tinnitus her après-ski legacy – thin winds
whistling into the high pine trees and round
her head, day in, day out. I drive carefully
with my precious cargo, slow down on bends,
looking forward to soft boiled eggs, soldiers.