shot glass
Issue # 4 May 2011
"... brevity is the soul of wit ..."
- William Shakespeare


I am a poet and folk/blues singer and was co-editor of Aireings Poetry Magazine for almost 12 years. Currently live and work in the Yorkshire Dales.

Lesley Quayle

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I used to know a woman

If you walk the southern road from Forest villages
to flat brown plains which press the snaking Severn,
there is a white house, upright, abandoned, its windows blind.

I used to know a woman there.
She afforded time in seconds,
her ceremonies meagre; she kept a neat house,
an ordinary husband, unremarkable children.

Beneath the barriers of flesh and skin,
another creature hungered.
I watched it coming, soft, wet eyes
swelling at the window , coo-ee mouth at the door,
loosening promises until its voice was raw. I hid from her.

One day she waded into the long perspectives
of slow brown river and faded sky,
scattering wild swans, slipping under the lazy wash,
then - nothing - the distant hum of traffic on a hot, black road.