On having enough messages from the dead – Abegail Morley

On having enough messages from the dead

Your name is paperweighted to my tongue.
Each time I try to lift it, it bangs to the floor
of my mouth, heavy as a sandbag,
or an iron girder from that old advert.
Your name trundles on wheels, heavy
in its criss-crossing skids, but like a glass
memory is always reflecting something else.

I decide to pin your name to the notice board,
stick another to the fridge with a magnet,
to loosen you from me. This morning I find
they’ve slipped off, parachuted down
and are hissing on an unwashed floor ‒
paper sun-torn, unbearable to touch.
I watch ink vacate itself from the present,
silently bleeding as it disappears.

 

Abegail Morley’s recent collection is The Skin Diary (Nine Arches). Her debut, How to Pour Madness into a Teacup, was shortlisted for the Forward Prize. In the Curator’s Hands is new from IDP. She’s “One of the Five British Poets to Watch in 2017” (Huffington Post), blogs at The Poetry Shed and is co-editor of Against the Grain Poetry Press.

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