2 poems by Alice Wickenden



The Crack


There is a crack in the pavement

reaching tendrils like trees

into the sky.


I stepped on the wrong concrete slab,

once,

whole days ago


now & before me the shuddering


bird flies into crack

in the horizon


aeroplane snaps into crack

in sky


nouns in crack slither

(fall back saying sorry)


then adjectives & verbs &

(sorry sorry sorry)


ephemera II


Now you have left all I have is

a bookmark from the place you buy

your books. I feel sick with jealousy:


that there are shops, out there,

with you in them, running your fingers

down their spines, making them


tremble. I let it mark my place &

guide me to where you are: not here

but in the world, not this page


but another. Under no covers but your own.


________________


Alice Wickenden is a PhD student and poet. She tries to live her life by Robert Hass's line:

'maybe you should write a poem about grace'. Her cat is called Cordelia; it's a test to see

whether you think of Buffy, Brideshead Revisited, or King Lear.