Shadow of a Girl Playing with a Hoolahoop
It used to scare me, what this girl is doing,
or those around her, off in the blind field.
Seemingly a girl playing with a hoolahoop,
or just a shadow, no source, just a shadow
next to a wagon, its backdrop here a dusty
plaza. Somewhere, I feel, from an upstairs
room, an eye looks at me. Somewhere, off
screen, a murder is taking place, this shade
a clue. Even so, things are too belated now,
this girl clearly a phantom and not a muse,
like she’s in a toy shop or inside its puzzle,
no girl playing so nonchalant with a hoop.
The sun, at these times, is no longer a sun,
more likely a lamp. My fingers are syllables.
And this pine table where the postcard sits
has all sorts of knots and faces of its own.
Patrick Wright has a poetry pamphlet, Nullaby, and forthcoming collection published by Eyewear. His poems have appeared in several magazines, including Agenda, Wasafiri, The Reader, London Magazine, Poetry Quarterly, Ink, Sweat and Tears,and Iota. His poem ‘The End’ was recently included in The Best New British and Irish Poets Anthology 2018, judged by Maggie Smith. He has also been shortlisted for the Bridport Prize. He is studying towards a PhD on ekphrastic responses to dark or near-black paintings, and he works as a Lecturer at The Open University where he teaches Creative Writing.
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