Small Flies and Other Wings – A Poem By Carol J Forrester

Small Flies and Other Wings

Christine Ay Tjoe

After the breakup:
easing her out of the settee cushions
so we could see the damage you left.

Spaces marked by absence.
Your idea of husbandry,
less obvious than building fences
to keep her tamed.

You took her wings,
kept them between glass,
along with all the others
collected and curated
to remind yourself,
how many birds roosted
in the catch of your palms.

They grew back so different,
translucent to the eye
and always tucked away
from those who might be watching.

You would not return to her
for wings that looked like these.
Not when there were others
much prettier for plucking.

Age Old Tradition – A Poem By Carol J Forrester #DVersePoets

I should have taken that course,
the one with the guy
who builds drystone walls up north
for the farmers who have to maintain
things the way they’ve always been.
A bit like how I’m still trying
to keep this how it was
when you laid each slab in place
one, against the other,
so clever with your fingers,
finding the flattest stones,
the edges most like jigsaw pieces,
and stacking the pile
till it looked like a skyscraper
even if it always was only a folly.

I’ve just taken part in Caroline Bird’s Brave Writing poetry workshop, so I was a little worried I’d be all poet’d out by the time I got round to the DVerse prompt for this evening. It was an amazing workshop and I feel like a got so much out of it, much as I did with the workshop I did last year run by Mark Pajak. Workshops are a great way to improve your poems and your craft.

Also, my poem When Medusa Goes Shopping went live on The Daily Drunk today! I think this is the first poem I’ve had published in 2020. After writing my collection I felt a bit like I’d run out of poems, and it’s only been in the last couple of months that I really started got the fire back in my belly when it comes to writing.

Since tonight’s prompt is Follies, I’d like to mention Hawkstone Park Follies. It’s a lovely site in Shropshire, built originally by the Hill family, and a local tourist attraction. The family built it as a pleasure garden (eighteenth century gardens designed for noble families to go walking in) and as a result the Follies boast fantastic sandstone caves, a hermitage, and the obelisk which is not actually an obelisk but a monument to the supposed first protestant mayor of London. (Supposed, the claim is a little contested). For those who enjoy walking it’s a fantastic place to visit (though only open between 1st July and 1st November). I’d highly recommend not doing it dressed as the Easter Bunny however. There are some steep bits.

Bubble-Wrap Knuckles – A Poem By Carol J Forrester #DVersePoets

Fireworks popping off underneath skin,
an explosions against the brickwork.
Blood so bright it burns my retinas
and when I dreamed I can see it,
the splash,
the sizzle of colour.
My own fists tight as un-popped corks
deep in my dressing gown pockets,
buried under lint and hidden things,
like the sound of bone
on plasterboard,
always plasterboard,
this fuse pulled taught between my shoulders
and your face so dark with thunder
the crash of it in a plate on the kitchen floor,
slowly starts to clear.

I feel like I need to preface this poem with the fact that it is not a description of a real event, or specifically based on one real individual. We’ve had sporadic fireworks for the last couple of weeks, so if anything, those are the main source of inspiration. Right with that out of the way, here’s an audio recording of the poem, and a note to say go and check out the rest of the poems written for tonight’s DVersePoets sound prompt.

A Pygmalion Girl #WeekendWritingPrompt

Why do that to yourself?

Play around with perfection,

even if it was only skin deep,

and the smoothness of these curves

turned your stomach at night,

when dusk settles its hands

either side of your hips,

presses into the grooves

where his tools worked you

into beauty.

Mounted you his sculpture

for all men to see.

Do you not appreciate how

his love made you

into a woman worth seeing?

Down To The Bones Of It #DVersePoets #Quadrille

Spent an evening smashing holes

in the walls you’d fixed,

and smoothed with filler.

Waited for the dawn to discover

the bones of this house

now naked of plaster.

Wondered if I looked as broken,


If I would catch light

just as quickly.