Ethel Bartlett Sits for the Artist Laura Knight
I painted the warmth of the sun on her face
as she turned towards its light with summer just gone,
the long sigh of autumn come.
As the last apples oozed on the grass
and drowsy wasps hovered, danced for their sugar,
I sketched a dream behind her closed eyes,
I drew her lips apart, head back, neck bare.
It is November, the branches stark, the leaves wet
on dark earth. She waits still.
A sallow man once told me that he loved her.
I imagine this to be true.
Neil Douglas is a doctor-poet working in London's East End. He is a member of the Covent Garden Stanza collective and has published recently in the Hippocrates Anthology 2018, The North and by Proverse in Hong Kong. His work will also be found in the NHS Anthology These are the Hands due out in March 2020.
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