Best Devon Poem 2011 - Penny Nichols


Side-Parting

Shortly after you left
they parted your hair
and dressed you with lace
like a badly-laid table.

I should have sailed you out
to a quiet sea
and left you
with the fish and birds,
drifting.

Or fed your traitor heart
to tiny bats
who would bear you away
in their warm bellies,
half-seen.

I could have made a better job of this
and lots of other things.

I asked if they could find you something less lacy.
'His mates will be in later.'
I don't know if they did.