Mirror, mirror

On the Mary Evans Picture Library’s Poems and Pictures blog today – my ‘Mirror’ poem with its gorgeous, accompanying photograph:

Mirror, you old jobsworth, you know

all my fractures

and keep your counsel.


Half-turn. There – twelve years old,

my scowl,

half confidence, half hope of better.


Eyes dip, and I’m in an aisle. A dress

my mother

liked and I did not.


Veiled dreams. That need to please,


make good, make safe. Make it out of there.


Between my brows one line of


cut two years later when he left.


Frail memory. It skims and

sinks away

as if it never happened.


A gleam. Breath held, I watch

my baby

reach – two steps, one step, three – and walk.


Decades splinter into

gemstone shards

we shake, twist, blend with artless grace.


You, mirror, witness all our pieces,


of loss and kisses.


The Mary Evans Picture Library is a wonderful archive of images, tucked away in a beautiful Arts and Crafts building in south east London. Every Thursday, the Poems and Pictures blog, curated by Gill Stoker, publishes a poem, old or mint new, accompanied by something from the archive. It’s absolutely gorgeous and an ideal oasis of calm for these uncertain times.

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