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Looking at a Photograph Taken Before I was Born by Roger Hare

In turning the page to September today

it occurs to me that my Mother was only thirteen

when Ansel Adams lined up his lens

for this calendar shot – a tree-trunk

measured against the haste

of a Yosemite river; wisdom of bark

silhouetted against foam and black water.

She wouldn’t have known

that her awakening ovarian line

held chromosomes

destined to dovetail with those

of a man daily cycling his way

around Nottingham.

When, later, cosmic collisions

that had birthed all our atoms

threw me a glance and said,

‘Now! Go! Have a place of your own’,

I jumped.


Roger writes from fascination with historical, geological, biological & sociological layers in

the world around us. His poems have appeared in several Art Centres, ‘Elbow Room’ journal, online at ‘Liminal Residency’ and in poetry readings in London, Ledbury and elsewhere. He’s currently exploring collaboration with two visual artists.


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