Summer 2008 Poetry Competition Third Prize

The Old Pillbox

by Charlotte Gann


Down by the River Ouse

yellow grasses quiver

and shimmer like harp strings.


But the old pillbox leers,

with his plait of ivy roots

and his fringe of ivy leaves,

and his empty eyes

sucking mine in particular.


Come, my child, he beckons,

as he’s beckoned all my life.


I push through inch thick lips

which swallow me in ink.

I know a broken wren lies trembling;

can hear her tiny pant

before slit windows bleach.


After, the grass has lost its charm;

deep down its roots are brown

and tangled, just like mine.


©2008 Charlotte Gann


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