a gull snaps its wings
as I stretch out the past
to the city with its dark heart
splitting our skins for a kiss.
On the rim of a memory,
like silver pins
on that street
My lover’s words I remember
like globed pearls on tepid stars
the hot dark of torchlight
from the pavement
as he went.
with eighty-six years in my face,
I read books
and play cards
and years have dried up,
in a vase.
in my crabbed hands his skin,
doused with river lights,
no foul breath of wartime but
a whole lost world of long-kissed nights,
thin films of eyes candled bright
in the lobes of my palms,
the four-medal arms deliberate,
Afterwards, the distant salute of a bomb.
Laura Potts is twenty-one years old and lives in West Yorkshire. She has twice been named a Foyle Young Poet. Her poems have appeared in Seamus Heaney’sAgenda, The Interpreter’s House and Poetry Salzburg Review. She has recently been shortlisted for a Charter-Oak Award for Best Historical Fiction at The University of Colorado and also made The 2017 Oxford Brookes International Poetry Prize shortlist. This year Laura became one of The Poetry Business’ New Poets and a BBC New Voice for 2017. Her first BBC radio drama Sweet The Mourning Dew will air at Christmas 2017.