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A woman with her collie dog, paddling in the sea. 

circa 1930s
A house-move and a late phone call

 

I hear your low-voiced recital like today’s

stiff wind on the beach, biting into

 

the tender brows of stoical people

walking dogs. So cold! Dunes and wave-tops sculpted

 

in hard metal – rococo silver and gold –

the sun springing a trap, minds going blank.

 

Now, your words numb me into acceptance,

talking ‘Chemo’, new drugs coming up … Facts

 

glare back like icy ripples on beach-pools.

Let’s change topics: I’ll say what here is like,

 

how eyes are colourless stones, changed by light,

by the moods of the sea. Today, the dog and I

 

were shaggy giants in the shore’s sand-mirror,

then golden light that cut out our silhouettes

 

in black paper. It’s easy, down there, to feel

that time has stopped, to be the timeless owner

 

of an ageless Collie, stiffening and

shaking showers of stars from his thick rug.

 

 

© Dilys Wood

Picture 10579732, photograph, circa 1930s

 

 

Dilys Wood founded Second Light Network of Women Poets in 1994. Her collections are Women Come to a Death (Katabasis, 1997) and Antarctica (Greendale Press, 2008).  She has co-edited Second Light’s ARTEMISpoetry and the following anthologies of women’s poetry: Fanfare (2015), Her Wings of Glass (2014), Images of Women (Arrowhead Press, in association with Second Light, 2006), My Mother Threw Knives (Second Light Publications, 2006), Making Worlds (Headland with Second Light, 2003) and Parents (Enitharmon Press, 2000).  ARTEMISpoetry is a bi-annual poetry magazine in which all poetry, reviews and articles are by women solely concerned with women’s poetry.