Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Medicine Horse

(for the claimant)

Quietly unzipping her skin
she leaves it
crumpled on the bed
and from the shadows
hears their crooked groans
try to reach
each other
in a nameless garland of bones.
Sobbing on the shoulder
of a ghost
she travels home
in a moon full of worms
bruised and bloody
but not bloodied enough for some.

Down windy streets, the wolves
slinking silkily in black
take turns
to nose her crotch
her blood
her words
an impersonal ‘you’
staring straight through
the smoke
curling from their eyes.
Their say said
in a month
daffodils refuse to gold
they billow
from the building’s front
she slips
out the back.
But crossing night
wild with snow
margins are left behind:
white geraniums and stars
gleaming the horse. That walks
by her side.

© Clare McCotter

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Clare McCotter has had poetry published in numerous journals including Abridged, Algebra of Owls, Boyne Berries, Crannóg, Cyphers, Envoi, The Galway Review, The Honest Ulsterman, Iota, Moth Magazine, A New Ulster, Revival, The SHOp, The Stinging Fly and The Stony Thursday Book. Black Horse Running, her first short form collection, was published in 2012. Revenant, her first collection of ‘longer’ poems will be published by Salmon Press in 2019. Home is Kilrea, County Derry.