Throwing Your Voice
Throw, and in the letting go
you are three fishermen:
one unspooling, paying line;
another, older, letting it run...
Watch your breath careen,
moth across the car park,
a room dim-lit like this –
dark glass somewhere else –
and find yourself behind the ear,
the lobe, the listened for:
a child again –
sitting on the bait box,
hands cupped for the catch.
The night before your mother’s death
you write to packed pews in your head:
raw, no crossing out, and red...
her Dunhill lighter, corner chair,
baggy bed gown, punk-cut hair;
the lilies, lobster, rump done rare –
she swore by tomatoes (and she could swear.)
The plonk I slipped her Christmas last –
bones in clothes, light as a nest;
the labour of her lung machine;
a closing curtain, last low hymn.
This dust, this thread –
the cushion where she sat:
dimples in the sofa, still smiling at the cat.