Polly

Writings and Witterings


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The Black Bridge—Coeur Noir

Coeur Noir

Shabby pile of bones
under a black bridge.
You were found out;
talked to the hawk,
or a murder of crows.

The shapes in white body suits,
blue overshoes,
said ‘unmistakable odour,’
‘caustic’ was overheard;
forensics disclosed
burned flesh.

Maybe your first,
who found you
in flagrante,
set you up,
or the second, the witness,
incredulous,
who could not bear
to believe.

Selfish, faithless,
you are alone.
The black bridge won’t help,
it mocks;
celebrates bones,
Coeur Noir,
parched bones,
bones never to be grieved,
beneath the bridge.

Polly Stretton © 2018

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AGM tonight

Worcester Writers' Circle

Tuesday 18 September and it’s the Annual General Meeting of Worcester Writers’ Circle. This is the evening that Circle officers are elected for the coming year, reports are produced for last year, subs are paid, food and drink shared and a good time had by all.

If you’d like to come along and perhaps become a member of the circle, please email secretary@worcesterwriters.org.uk Come and see if we are what you are looking for…guests are always welcome.

The annual subscription is £18.

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Cutting Back the Tayberries – Edwin Stockdale

Cutting Back the Tayberries

In her head, Granny hears Satie’s Gymnopédie No.1,
the CD Grandpa bought her.

She is pruning the tayberries away
from Galloway Beltie cows.

The stalks beginning to brittle.
She sits on a stool to garden.

She shuffles back to her bungalow
with tiny feet that shrink over time.

Time for her tot, whisky and ginger ale,
with not too much ginger.

She sits on the patio, her back supported,
sips her drink, watches the sun fading.

Edwin Stockdale’s debut pamphlet, Aventurine, was published in September 2014 by Red Squirrel Press.  He has an MA in Creative Writing from the University of Birmingham with Distinction and is researching a PhD in Creative Writing at Leeds Trinity University.

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Homes and Gardens – Melanie Branton

A good read…

Homes and Gardens

The brambles went mental when my mum was ill.
I was too sapped of strength to pick up the secateurs
and, like mouthy Year 9s testing boundaries with the supply teacher,
they sensed my weakness, took the piss,
played Twister, graffitied all over the garden,
flung their hagnailed hands over the fence
to give the finger to the neighbours.

They infiltrated the house,
insinuated themselves inside my mother’s rib cage,
wrapped themselves around her lungs and heart,
popped them like birthday balloons
that shrivelled to scraps of burst rubber
in the centre of a dark and thorny thicket.
Prickly tendrils crept inside my skull,
clawed my brain, left puncture wounds that festered.

It’s only now I can bring myself to cut them back,
only now I can see over the garden wall again.

Melanie Branton is a poet and spoken word artist from North Somerset. Her first…

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