On having enough messages from the dead – Abegail Morley

On having enough messages from the dead

Your name is paperweighted to my tongue.
Each time I try to lift it, it bangs to the floor
of my mouth, heavy as a sandbag,
or an iron girder from that old advert.
Your name trundles on wheels, heavy
in its criss-crossing skids, but like a glass
memory is always reflecting something else.

I decide to pin your name to the notice board,
stick another to the fridge with a magnet,
to loosen you from me. This morning I find
they’ve slipped off, parachuted down
and are hissing on an unwashed floor ‒
paper sun-torn, unbearable to touch.
I watch ink vacate itself from the present,
silently bleeding as it disappears.

Abegail Morley’s recent collection is The Skin Diary (Nine Arches). Her debut, How to Pour Madness into a Teacup, was shortlisted for the Forward Prize. In the Curator’s Hands is new…

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