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Poetry

 

138 x 216mm

 

54 pages

 

£9.50 + P&P UK

 

ISBN 978-1-912876-40-2

 

PUB: 17/08/2020

 

 

ORDER HERE

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Impact of Limited Time

 

Kitty Donnelly

 

 

 

Joint Winner

Indigo Dreams Collection Competition 2019

 

 

The poems  in this prize-winning collection explore how the past exists alongside the present, from childhood to childbirth and from death to rebirth.

 

Some of these poems create a voice for those who have not been able to speak for themselves in history (including the housemaid of the baker on Pudding Lane and Pre-Raphaelite muse Lizzie Siddal).

 

From an invasive hospital procedure to the loneliness of single-parenthood, these narrators find beauty in the moment and within the context of  their limited time.

 

 

 

Off Comers

 

First the kids lined up outside.

Their silent vigil lasted

and their parents’ eyes

tracked us like searchlights

through the boredom of their summer

when subtlety cracks like a river bed.

 

Our garden became

an ashtray, a dogs’ toilet.

We woke to eggshells

splayed across the path,

OFF COMERS

sprayed in fat red lettering.

 

On the bus, a girl gobbed

in my pigtails,

held a lighter to my coat.

It raged that autumn –

rising with the school-term:

a conflagration of hatred.

 

 

Lizzie Siddal

 

He sketched me once in Highgate

when waning light betrayed his charcoal,

failed his eyesight.

 

He cursed he couldn’t

catch my profile as it was.

I was patient and I ached.

 

As laudanum enters the bloodstream,

the mind numbs and elucidates.

Tonight my hair won’t be put out –

 

a fire before the glass.  

In oils they never captured it so luminous.

At first I thought them moths, lured to its flame.

 

It was I who singed my wings,

I who crave these bitter tears

the vial spills on my tongue.

 

 

After the Solstice

 

The longest day swings on its hinge.

Newspapers smoulder with division.

 

This lick of political flames won’t be drowned

by a flash summer flood so fierce

 

our enemy rabbits hutch together, fur on fur.

We listen to the downpour, caught

 

between flash and thunder in our

half-finished, half-purchased house.

 

What future lies in ambush

for your sons, my daughter?

Time

 

So we plough each week

into a furrow of the past.

 

Do you feel that dull insistence?

That’s time

 

tugging at your substance

like a thread

 

spooling from the wheel

then spent.

 

 

Stella Sculpts the Murderer

 

When I get bored watching my marriage

wither on the vine, I conjure your image.

 

I sculpt you without fantasy,

without moulding away your savagery.

 

Sometimes I run my tongue along

your coarse, clay cheeks.

 

I have lost touch with my own face.

The mirror takes and won’t return.

 

Last night, lying apart from you,

I dreamed I was Cassiopeia –

 

Ethiopian queen of constellations.

I ruled my kingdoms

 

with dirty hands and an ill-fitting gown.

When I woke, the light discharged

 

a warmth, like blood.

Then you were there, persisting.

 

Kitty Donnelly is an MA student at Manchester Writing School and has degrees in English and Mental Health Nursing. She has worked in mental health services for many years.  

 

Her poems have been published in magazines and journals including Acumen, Mslexia, Quadrant and The New Welsh Review.

 

In 2019, she received a Creative Future Award and was commended in the McLellan Poetry Competition.

 

This, her debut collection. was a joint winner of The Indigo Dreams Collection Competition 2019.

 

Kitty lives in West Yorkshire with  her husband and daughter, terrier Zip and cat Pepper.

author 2 amend Lizzie_Siddal_WEB 9781912876402