Becoming whole

After Megan Fernandes 

Sometimes, I could see Daddy,

liming along the sea walls of Trini

racing in the hills between the metal shacks 

clothed under a black blanket dotted

with diamonds holding wishes of England

whispered from thick black lips.

I’ve been waiting on Summer like a promise.

Sweating under breasts, I’m reluctant to cross

over the threshold, the weight of this black body

offending everybody and including me.

Some days, I imagine silver light shed 

along the shoreline. Probing sand eels

leaving spiralling piles of sand and shit.

Grace is not something I wear. Except

one time after pulling myself together again in

Iceland’s otherworldly landscape.

Daddy kept his island parcelled in fur, under 

the bed, never to drift out and cocoon me in home.

At midlife crisis, I’m knee-deep in this man-made

forest, serpents for hair, munching waxcaps, knowing 

it’s not wise, but mesmerised by their ruby rubber

ness, knowing there’s no escape looking in the mirror

Rubbernecking

She’s called Daphe, the woman running the business training out of her Notting Hill home.

The Thames curves south from here by Chelsea, sluggish brown. The city’s awake and burning.

Have you been to see the damage yet? he asks, in our snatched conversation.

Almost gleeful in his hunger to hear details about the tower block which blazed leaving so many people missing or dead.

He says there’s photographs of the missing stuck to tree trucks, walls and railings. Black, brown and olive skinned and missing.

I don’t want to see this suffering. The ruins becoming a tourist attraction. Leave them with some dignity. Always having to endure the gaze in life and death.

Summer Fox

Could I be as cute and cunning as a fox, I giggle into another snapshot filter. 

Happy in my play and disregard for others’ opinions.

His eyes are open and still. I think he’s a he, slight and young. Pointy nose with white frosting.

The rest of him is a dull orange red.

So whole and perfect and dead.

Lying on his side at the edge of the motorway, four legs sticking straight out as if ready to bounce back onto, after playing dead. 

I feel guilty. I didn’t hit him. He was already dead when I flew by in Summer, my metallic orange Susuki Splash, honest. 

But when I see him dead as clear as day, I feel shame at my mini Snapchat film and buying into the cunning as a fox stereotype of fairytales. 

My heart stays in my throat for the whole day.
Why did he have to die, such beauty and no blood? 

WildThings

numb feet

throbbing thighs

the burning thin skin of elbows

pain is real and immediate

teeth bared like a wildthing

sharp intake of breath whistles

but the singing after the stinging

is the nectar is the blooming

blossoming rush of love

for the moment, for life, for self

The Outlook is Good

uncomfortable sensations which can only be described as pain course straight to the core

to release endorphins of joy

the outlook is better

the outlook is golden

the outlook is diamond

the outlook is bright

the outlook is purple

the outlook is a gift