for Patricia Ware
disappear with words – people
or changes that found you out:
the kind one ready with the jar of
or the menace of a grey mid-morning
quartered by windows.
Were there instructions
on how to fill the graph paper?
Where do you draw the line?
At the back of the reflected classroom
water bounces out of a pipe.
The caretaker’s daughter becomes
a nurse, and the nurse grows
golden marrows on her allotment.
Timetables arrive in different inks.
The key can be looked at later
when you’ve had a wash.
No sense of urgency prevails
for all the suffering – great loves
push a mop along the corridor
without windows, without a second
thought given to appearances.
Will Eaves is a poet and novelist. His most recent book is “Broken Consort” (CB Editions)
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This article appears in the 16 Aug 2023 issue of the New Statesman, Russia’s War on the Future