‘Relic’, Kitty Coles

Here

is a hank of her hair. It slides

through my hands, a molten rope,

dark honey from the pines,

and I feel its charge

leach fiercely into my palm,

my fingers lit by its undying heat.

This object is her body,

a part of her body and,

holding it, I am closer to her than ever,

my hands where hers have been,

on the dust of her flesh,

invisible but lacing this thing like stars

lace the lump of the night,

enlightening its darkness.

Let it confer a miracle: let it

heal me and knit

together all the gaps that gape

where I was separated, self from self.

Let it thread through

the partings.

Make me whole.

Kitty Coles has been widely published in magazines and anthologies. She was joint winner of the Indigo Dreams Pamphlet Prize 2016 and her debut pamphlet, Seal Wife, was published in 2017

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