Angela Readman – The Poet’s Last Will and Testament

The Poet’s Last Will and Testament

I bequeath to you morning upholstering my chair,
light slicing a dull hour, spread on the rug like my map.
And birds, whom I shall not name, but allow
to make their own introductions, peck words
to the window I saw through. You may find
the glass dirty, the view worn soft as a painter’s brush.
Finger it. Never stop looking out. If there are bees,
recall spilling a box of felt tip pens as a child,
swapping the yellow and black lids, look to insects
on a leaf, feel the wander slow as a palm reader
scribing life and love to a hand. Don’t be surprised
if you find hearts and faces in my room, knotted
into the oak of the desk. Its weeping is done,
sap dried, it will pucker and darken in due time.
The sag in my chair will learn the shape of someone
else’s recline. Fill it with your own behind, roll a page
of moonlight into an Olivetti, and let your name
on cork roll over mine. I can leave you only this. Now.

angela readman’s poetry has won the Mslexia poetry competition, The Charles Causley, and The Essex Poetry Prize. She is also a Costa Short Story Award winning story writer, her story collection Don’t Try This at Home will be published in May by And Other Stories.

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