Poem introduction

This next poem is about a woman who decided not to become a mother and so has foregone the grandmother role. The lines wander across the page, break up here and there and struggle fruitlessly to get away from the left hand margin.

Once Troublesome

It isn’t New Year yet so happy what?
Till then it’s Boxing Day every morning.
Empty bags hang off the radiator.
Chilly: hot
                        cold
                                                Cordelia position.
                                    Did it mean
we didn’t love each other
that morning he gave me up
though that same night he said let’s marry?
            My striped dress hung
                        along my body
                                    bounced
                        boldened
            bitmapped.
my abdomen as I walked, a balloon
                        sinking back down
                        its own string
after the decision.
The baby would have had to sleep in a drawer.
                                    Immortalists
(not you who refuse to believe improbable notions)
think:
            The smallest cell refuses to die
            in its everness.
Now I live in an attic
garden is the chewed melon string of sky.
Old bins, old books. Death’s hardly ethical
in the light of such continuity. Last week
the CEO of a charity named in my will
wrote to suggest ways to retrieve what I’ve lost.
Look, Christmas photos
            of others’ other
                        children. After
                                    Pocoyo, Juggling Balls.

from The Clockwork Gift (Shearsman, 2009), © Claire Crowther 2009, used by permission of the author

Recordings

Claire Crowther

Claire Crowther Reading from her Poems

1Captured Women

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2Wyvern

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3Investigating the Easter Issue

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4Lost Child

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5City of Turns

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6Petra Genetrix

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7Woman, Probably One of the Fates

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8Backpacker

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9Ubi Sunt

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10Names

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11Once Troublesome

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12The Thike

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13Sleeping on a Trampoline

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14The Wildlife of Goodbye

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15Xylotheque

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16A Curse on Your Moider

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17Birthday

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18Snail

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19The Alices

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20Vial As I Am, Tremella Nostoc, Over is Almost All of Lover

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23Alcyone

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24Against the Evidence

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25The Night of Misrule

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26Cheval de Frise

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Books by Claire Crowther