I want to coat you in patchwork

layers of heat,

too warm to burn

with knees bent sideways

and a small mouse head. Cradled,

to feed you milky tea.

Blue eyes open,

like an angel, you said.


angels are red faced,

ethereal and dead:

you’re a present;

I’ll decorate you with bows,

and let daisy chains embrace

your head, chest, waist and toes.


I can put a hand on your swaddled shoulder

Let the fabric weight tighten and hold you

sleeping, you pout,

your lashes dust your cheeks like soot

on pepper-freckled skin;

one elf-ear peeks

hair spirals in.


I was afraid,

going with you to the nursery,
washing the cups with the grey dishcloth;

scared of who you might be.

I didn’t want to know.

I went though.

Those times lost

in your child’s memory


You want your hands,

so when I leave for more white tea

you shuffle loose the coloured squares,

escape the you-shape;

reach for me.


© Lydia Allison 2012

2 Comments to “Chalk”

  1. I really liked this, you have a great feel for rhythm… It’s nice to find someone on this site with some talent every once and a while.

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