"Posthumous": a new poem by Olivia Byard


Out here, far from New Doggerland's
London, where the pale long-tower gleam
trails wavering weed beneath
knifing boat keels, and dull bells
clank and moan when Westerlies blow;
                  strangers may climb
up through rubble and purple-blushed
winter bushes, to this derelict place
above the new Thames Bay's
steep shores.
                  If they come,
up the path's ruin to the peeled
red-specked door, ajar and askew,
junk-mail dust blowing behind them,
and search along the corridor
to my dim room, they'll find wires,
tangled and gnawed, and hulking plastic;
mute, as silverfish swarm
bloated pages.
                  In my flicked-through
notebooks, mildewed and torn,
they'll see only tiny biro threads,
the broken veins of ancient paper's skin.




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