Kate Noakes – Two Poems

Affecting the balance

A loose cobblestone,
fat as a lump of slow-
cooled basalt, a hazard
for stilt-walkers and girls
in the high-high heels
of now, or anyone disabled,
unable, is the pavement
rebelling beneath our feet
rocking from sand
and mortar to flow as if
revivified, a lava stream
coursing the ancient ways
of the city, a rabble
discontented with its place.

Under traffic’s drone
you can hear its troubles
the crack and spit
as hot stones hit the river.

 

Scold

 

All this blah blah is filming my tongue

as if I’ve drunk a litre of full fat
and it’s globules have blocked the pores

slowed the muscle to a milk slug

sliming between my teeth
crying enough, enough.

All this blah blah is stopping my tongue

as if I’ve swallowed plaster of Paris
and its setting heat has fixed the muscle

firmed it for a few weeks, making me rest

then, freed it when silence
has been enough, enough.

All this blah blah has bled my tongue

as if every word is a drop
congealing on the rough post

where it’s been nailed, because I refused

my son, told the recruiters
enough, enough.

Kate’s poetry blog is at boomslangpoetry.blogspot.com

Her poetry books are: The Wall Menders, Two Rivers Press, 2009, Cape Town, Eyewear Publishing, 2012, I-spy and shanty, corrupt press, 2014, Tattoo on Crow Street, Parthian, 2015 (forthcoming)

 

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