This is the poem that was short listed for the Paragram Poetry Prize in 2013- I was invited to Covent Garden to read both this and the long listed ‘Hobgoblin Trees’ – tonight I’m posting it for dVerse, where we have Kelly behind the bar. Kelly’s asked us about scents that linger, so this poem is, I believe, fitting the criteria.
the fragrance of his shaving gel.
He carries an iPad.
The first thing to leave
is the light of his eyes.
I touch his absence;
a disembodied voice, ‘see you later.’
There are magical contortions
made by dust motes,
they swirl in the sunbeams that
pour through the east window,
and echo, ‘later, later.’
I still feel the tweed jacket,
rough against my fingers,
it lingers with his shadow in the room.
Polly Stretton © 2013
Shortlisted for the Paragram Poetry Prize 2013