A place on the sofa – by Lesley Burt

 

Spiky horsehairs, disguised by a patchwork
coverlet, prickle bare calves of the girl
who raced to perch between dad and grandma.

Her mother leans from an armchair to stroke
the boy’s head while he squirms on the rag rug,
whines to sit, instead, where his sister is.

Jane, says grandma – the girl stiffens
as everyone looks at her – please
fetch my crochet from the dining room.

Past the door, through the gap between hinges,
she sees brother, triumphant, beside dad; hears
grandma say, I thought that’d settle things.

The girl brings the crochet. She sits, quiet
on the rug. Rage rests in her diaphragm.
One day, she’ll breathe that out.

 

 

 

Lesley lives in Dorset. Her poetry has been published online, including Long Exposure and the Poetry Kit website, and in magazines and anthologies, including: Tears in the Fence, The Interpreter’s House, Sarasvati, Reach and The Butchers Dog.

a termination – by Lesley Burt

 

the priest conceals himself
in brocade-and-white
a thurible swings

a haze of incense looms
over the coffin    fills
the congregation’s throats

the nuns    hushed by ritual
lower heads to pray
for their Sister    her Sin

avoid meeting his eyes
know the fall
of his gaze

 

 

 

 

 

Lesley lives in Dorset. Her poetry has been published online, including Long Exposure and the Poetry Kit website, and in magazines and anthologies, including: Tears in the Fence, The Interpreter’s House, Sarasvati, Reach and The Butchers Dog.  Recent awards in competitions include Chipping Sodbury 2014, Poetry Kit 2015 and Poetry Kit Members Competition March 2016.