By Laura Potts
Yes. Back then, I was child of a garden and pavement
end. When homestead old was forest and fire, and high
were the gold robes of fields which rose to my run, some
say I tore up the moors. On that cold morning and grey,
before day burst down a valley now lost (I cross
myself and pray), I lay in the grass like a child of light.
The stars said yesterday’s night lived on, but gone
were the fawns which shaped the hill. Out and away,
still, I remember the scrap of my scream on the wind.
After that? Nil. But spilt down the river my girlhood blood
when he came with his bird-wet skin, portraits of women
gone thin in his eyes. My cries are yesterday’s
echo. No. To red-slit fig he pressed his teeth, gum
to a garden in infancy green and only the hills to hear.
Wind-sneer spat at the curl of my ear when I lay
on that black-flat ground, when pale were the globes of clay
in my eyes. He rolled them skullwards once, twice. Some
nights, the shy face of moon makes a bruise in the sky
high-hung in a field where no wildfowl graze, cries for
my last-gasp fire of youth. Yes. I have seen better days.
Laura Potts is twenty-two years old and lives in West Yorkshire. Twice-recipient of the Foyle Young Poets Award, her work has been published by Aesthetica, The Moth and The Poetry Business. Having worked at The Dylan Thomas Birthplace in Swansea, Laura was nominated for The Pushcart Prize and became one of the BBC’s New Voices last year. Her first BBC radio drama aired at Christmas. She received The Mother’s Milk Writing Prize and a commendation from The Poetry Society in 2018.
Her personal website is