Monday, May 1, 2023





Every shell is dipped in night.

Place an ear against the ceramic

to eavesdrop on fox squabbles,

crows watching rubbish bags

left split open like unfinished

operations, brambles unfurling

their fruit. Humans, extras

with no dialogue. Open every

shell to reveal day - the glazed

pottery, a perfect sky. Of course,

there's the meat: An orange muscle

on a ready-made plate. Quiet,

contemplative. I threw up the sea

the first time I tried it. Didn't know

I was chewing its prayer.

(Previously published in FEED Lit Mag)



Walking Up Scafell Pike

With My Father


After walking a few yards

you breathe like someone

who has slipped across the border.


I am ahead, you are far

behind. There are no rest stops

on this rocky path to the summit,


no hedgerows to distract

our lack of common interests

or silences broken up with ums


and errs. You wear a jacket

of rain and I nudge you ahead with tuts.

At the top, there is nothing


but what a view. We are at opposite

ends of the plateau with only similar

rocks bringing us closer.

(Previously published in Poetry and Places)


The Art Of Remembering

Your History


I do the same ritual every morning

while the clouds wrap their blankets

around the sunlight: Practice Italian

and Spanish. Trace my fingers


along paths of cheekbones inherited

from my mother and all the mothers

before her. Gaze into the bathroom

mirror to make sure my chestnut eyes,


a hand-me-down from my mother

borrowed from autumn, are still

in good health. Sometimes I'll bake

a focaccia and remember how its dimpled


surface contains the history of my

grandfather. The salt on my lips

after tasting it is a lesson in understanding

how you're just borrowing bones


for the next generation. Every room

I've lived in will be left a part of me.

Perhaps, after I'm gone, my son

will assemble this map I've made

to show the direction our souls go

after we've parted.

(Previously published in Wild Greens)




Subnivean were the overripe plums

in my aunt's back garden. Waited

to be dissected by a crow's anatomist

beak or a frontal lobotomy by wasps.

Buried under an avalanche of snow-mould,

did the seeds look for salvation

or accept their fate - to be exhibited

by the earth as perfect dioramas

caught in a moment? I cannot say.

I am still winter-cold and wait for spring

to sweep away frost tempting me

to stay in my place.




CHRISTIAN WARD is a UK-based writer who has recently appeared in Open Minds Quarterly, Double Speak, Obsessed with Pipework, Primeval Monster, Tipton Poetry Journal, Amazine and Wild Greens. He can be found on Instagram @fighting_cancer_with_poetry

No comments :

Post a Comment