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James Wilson

Posted by admin on February 21, 2012

James Wilson teaches in the Department of Humanities at Villanova University. He is an editor of Front Porch Republic and the author of the chapbook Four Verse Letters (Steubenville, 2010), and of Timothy Steele: A Critical Introduction (Story Line Press, forthcoming).


Immigrant Serving Maid in Dublin


This morning in the tiled scullery,

The sunk-eyed Romanian girl whose job it is

To serve the jetlagged tourists toast and tea,

Stared out beyond the sugar cubes, cream tins,


And lumpy raisin scones, her arms set cross

Her belly in an absent stewardship,

A chessboard apron falling at her waist,

And no translatable word upon her lip.


Within her vagrant loneliness, the rushed

Complaints at how the hotel breakfast tastes,

The momentary tourist’s sneer, can’t touch

The boredom or the longing in her face;


She’s been borne here not on wings of desire

But just to work and send home cash by wire.