Third

 

Yesterday's Child

Laura Potts (Wakefield, UK)



laurapotts250x300Helen Ivory: I enjoyed this wild dark nursery rhyme of a poem the first time I read it. It demands to be read out loud, the music of it is so strong, and the music of it is so strong the meaning only hits with the second or third reading, despite all evidence being there from the outset. ‘And overhead a mouth of moon / has called the mourning on this room, and soon / an ever-bloom of moss will clot the loss of you’. A poem about the loss of a child, which woke for me the rhythms of a nursery rhyme, made that loss even more poignant for me.

 

 

 

 

 


Yesterday’s Child

The sun slit a knife through the womb-wet night

and bled like an egg, like a budburst head:

in the swell of the sweat on the belly of the bed,

broken-throated then and red, we said

the clench of winter let the roses grow instead.

 

But time has fled with jenny wren and left

the meadow dead. And overhead a mouth of moon

has called the mourning on this room, and soon

an ever-bloom of moss will clot the loss of you.

For the years between us are wide as a child;

 

and the tears as wet as a wound.

 

 

 

 

 

 

poem © Laura Potts