The burn is crisp against my cheek
The burn is crisp against my cheek that grannies and grandpas used to pat. I call you forward, dare you to speak.
Times and troubles have made us meek. Your careless comments should only fall flat, but the burn is crisp against my cheek.
Catch my feelings before they leak down past the river where we once sat. They call you forward, dare you to speak.
Gentle touches tend to reek
Of guilty coffees and bacon fat,
and the burn is crisp against my cheek.
When biting mornings get too bleak, Lay me down on the old dog’s mat. Call me forward, dare me to speak.
Wearing sorrow has made me weak. I step outside and notice that
the burn is crisp against my cheek. I push on forward and dare to speak.
The dying thing
I wonder if they hear it, through thick skin.
Buried in my flesh
is the dying thing.
It’s there in the morning, catching in my throat. It rises with the bile,
and claws to stay afloat.
Whispers will not find it, but laugh and it will weep. Howling at the hazy night because it cannot sleep.
It uncoils worn cords and fastens them to bone. Makes me dance for others So I won’t look so alone.
It creeps into my lungs, turns every breath to fire, burns along my arms, and opens them with wire.
Other patchwork people have smiles that seem 2D. And bubbling expressions my features never see.
I wonder if they have one, twisting deep within. A close and constant friend, another dying thing.
Every day I watch time carve your skin
Every day I watch time carve your skin.
A mark by your mouth or a line by your eyes, But the gulls still sing and the tide comes in.
A technicoloured bruise where you kicked your shin, all tight smiles and shushes and pleasant lies. Every day I watch time carve your skin.
You carry more weight, but your hair is thin. Misty gazes squint to reach evening skies, where the gulls still sing and the tide comes in.
Cracked feet trudge tales of where they’ve been. Laughs are murmurs, not crackling cries. Every day I watch time carve your skin.
Forgive me father, for my risible sins.
They pray for a time that lives after they rise, when the gulls still sing and the tide comes in.
New lungs beat with breath and life begins. You grow and play and pain is a surprise, but each day I watch time carve your skin. And the gulls still sing and the tide comes in.
Sarah is an emerging creative writer and journalist with a passion for varied forms of writing. Whether it’s poetry, screenwriting, or audio documentary, she enjoys finding — and bringing to the forefront — the threads that connect us as humans. She also drinks a lot of green tea, which only helps the creative process.