Jacquie Wyatt – three poems


Anna sits, pink petals furled,
as we talk of recurring
Her bones barely veiled
by her whispering skin.
Her skirt so short
she could be soliciting,
yet her legs are childish,
the picture of innocence.
Nothing enters her, including food.

Mine’s about an octopus, she says,
looking at her mother.


There’s something sacred
in sharing someone’s story,
sifting through dusty memories,
for their flannel-scrubbed faces.

Recollections clawed back,
as they land remembered selves
like gasping fish –
random flashbacks –
integral to them still.

I hear the same themes rise,
like rhythms drumming through
people, markets, shops, events
the hard, the kind, the nearly-new.

Passages long shared,
back ways in to gardens,
to acceptance and pride
in what we made of it all
in this little knot of streets,
so narrow you got glued
into each others’ lives.


You didn’t want to go,
whole, into the ground
because you thought most people,
like you, with your silly life,
meant little in the running
of the human race,
just passed the baton on.
Not enough earth
for each of us to become
boxed compost heaps.

You didn’t fancy cremation,
your grit flung in favourite places,
us stung by the loss of you,
slapped back by the wind,
spitting mouthfuls of shock.

You joked that we should shove you
in a black bin-liner,
now you’d shrunk you would fit
in with the rubbish –
leave you out on the kerb.
You didn’t want us fussing,
said you didn’t want me sad,
about you dying.

You might have guessed,
I’d keep you with me,
here, in this poem.

A refugee from marketing, Jacquie Wyatt writes poetry, flash fiction and novels. Her poems have been published in The Dawntreader, the Poems for a Liminal Age anthology (SPM Publications, 2015), Rollick, Structo, Chain Reaction and Gold Dust. She is a repeat winner of Write Invite for flash fiction and Hour of Writes for fiction and poetry.