Water and how I know it
I saw it in cloven hoof pocks,
where tadpoles hatched, squirming.
I stood in it, wading with mangroves,
bitten by mosquitoes.
I saw it in clouds and falling from the sky.
I swam it, the greys, greens and blue.
I ran it through my fingers at baptismal fonts.
I drank it, put it in my body, let it out.
I heard its frigid creak above the roly poly
seals hunting golomyanka in Baikal.
I bathed my babies in it, swirled
their nappies in buckets and bowls.
I breathed it in on Fox Glacier,
a scented drift of knives and daffodils.
I knelt helpless as it drained
from a drip stand into your PICC line.
My grandmother carried it everyday,
swaying in heavy, silver pails.
Catherine Baker has been published by Stand, Snakeskin and Amaryllis. She was highly commended in The Prole Poet Laureate competition in April 2020. She has poems in anthologies such as Poetry from Gloucestershire and Ways to Peace. She was runner up in GWN poetry competition, 2018, the poem was read at the Cheltenham Literary Festival.