top of page

2 poems by Clarissa Aykroyd

Brush Pass, Royal Albert Hall

The power of the secret

Is in the having and not the telling.

But I can’t deny

That you’re here for me, or rather

My information. The orchestra roars below

As we approach, and we must be

As bold as the coming cadenza.

They’re all here, watchers or not,

In the rose light – the barefoot man,

The lovers, the reader, the widower,

And all this exists only

For you, for me and for the secret,

And our hands that have hardly touched and can never hold.


When the door had closed once more

on the open-shut room, and

walls reformed and broke until

he was the god Panoptes,

vision running through the dark

into the heart, he took hold

of the scarlet thread, studying

its blood-bite on his fingers,

dragging at it, umbilical

to his gut-mind, pulling until

resistance broke a pathway

and the handle turned again.


Clarissa Aykroyd grew up in Victoria, Canada and now lives in London. Her debut pamphlet is Island of Towers (Broken Sleep Books, 2019). Her poems have appeared in publications including The Interpreter's House, Lighthouse, Ink Sweat & Tearsand Strange Horizons, among others. She also blogs about poetry at


bottom of page