Queens of night
They were almost black in the sunlight
as if spring-brightness had darkened them
shaped them to wine glasses, each tulip filled
brimful with her own heady cloak-and-dagger colour,
radiating heat, each petalled bowl tumescent
beneath curls at the top, this frail ferocity curved
like a pelvis. Queens of night stolen by day,
a garden of plummy velvet erotica, their obscene
beauty making me think of nakedness, of desire
of how short a time they will unfurl and undress to nothing.
“Things are getting ready
out of sight”
This moment, Eavan Boland
I make notes when the lecturer tells me how things
become problematic when we try to define what we are
with just one word. He is right, I think; capturing us is like getting
a pin and pushing it through the middle of a butterfly that’s ready
to flit, its trembling thorax pierced, its own idea muted only to
colour, each immovable wing a one-sided history. Words have to happen
but they muffle our touch like glass, making separate relics out
of tiny electric some-or-other things I can’t unfeel these days, of
the arrowing jolt and deliciousness of maybe, perhaps, just out of sight.
Olga has published two pamphlets: apple, fallen (Against the Grain Press) and A sky full of strange specimens (Nine Pens Press). Her debut full collection Frieze will be published by Nine Arches Press next year. Originally from Northern Ireland, she lives in Warwickshire where she works as a teacher.