Poetry from Natalie Crick

For You

This month her depression began.
He obsessed her.
She tied her heart with ribbon like a present,
Licking his fingers and kissing his feet.

Words failed her.
She breathed him in like a terrible secret,
A childless woman beneath the ivory moon.
But what about his eyes, his eyes, his eyes.

Walking in the Winter trees
Were his shadows in the fog.
He was innocent as a lamb.
Sleep, my Angel,

Deaf and dumb
As the drugged summer sun.
My Love,
I want you.

This Dark Thing

This dark thing that sleeps in me,
It steals from me so I am left with nothing.
I am blameless, Godiva.
The murmurings are alive.
Watching you dully from my bed
I have taken the pill to kill.
I mourn my own death,
Drowning into the night.
My tears could devour
The ocean. I want, I want.
I have lost myself. But that is not enough.

Love Me

Two friends.
Chalk and cheese, gelled with want.
The shy one with silver sticks
That clunked on wooden boards
Skipped to a secret song.

And him, a gauzy giant,
The bitter scat his excuse.
It shines for special occasions,
Shouting about life of biting tongues:
I am history reinvented.

Blink twice. I am not out of the ordinary.
He tells me how I have a nervous laugh
And how nice
The mice looked, strung up in grey wire.
An easy spear through each socket.

Would I like to walk with them?
It would be like kissing the flute
With my eyes smoking and hissing,
Ash sinking in each pit.
Let me roll in icy pools.

The Other does that,
Hair wet and black,
Tossing acid.
Do you ever sleep?
He wants to be loved.

I do not react.
The sun lets them in,
The moon breaks in two.
Bell, once.
Bell, twice.

One is finished.

Dear Sister

It is Winter here.
Snow has fallen.
“I am afraid”, said the moon.
She is beautiful tonight.

Now it is darker than December.
What is dead is a different colour.
My dead sister is neither a man nor a woman.
She is a ghost.

We do not speak of her
Anymore.
I turn away from mirrors
When I see her reflection.

The dead can no longer see
I no longer care.
O Lord of darkness,
I want my innocence.

Night’s End

Snow had fallen, I remember,
At the night’s end.
Do you hear his voice?
I am never alone.

And at the end?
I do not live.
It is forbidden to die.
The winds are changing.

Our dead brother waited
Undiscovered,
But very dark, very hidden,
As the earth became black.

The field was parched and dry,
Filled with death already.
You walk through it.
You see nothing.

The Murmurings

The poison drips steadily into my skull.
Lice are feeding. They are carnivorous.
She is biting away at my life.
I am merely a husk.

She watches me lie awake at night.
She lives in me, breathing,
Locking my heart away in a chamber
Where nothing moves.

Where the air freezes to ice.
I wait for a sound.
There is no end.
I remember the beginning: a death.

For years
We are white with exhaustion at what this thing is.
It is the last night of our lives.
Tomorrow I’ll be gone.

She is alive. Look:
It is beginning to hatch.
But it is dark. So dark.
I can barely see my own reflection in the mirror.

There is just some stranger.
We try to catch the pieces of me
Before they shatter forever.
Misted snow drifts over the remains.

Sunday School

Madeline loves it
And sits as Mother would.
The priest is like her Father
Dressed all in grey,

Palms fluttering with
Paper clowns,
Legs and arms spinning anti-clockwise
Like the priest’s eyes slide

From side to side.
We are his for an hour
But he cannot touch us,
For we are jewels to be watched,

And, one day taken.
Nobody has ever held his hand
But Grandmother, with rings like
Little girl’s warnings.

This is my house of God,
Rain thundering as
Unanswered questions.
Their faces are taught and chilled with frost.

He is the bee of androgyny
Thrusting candelabras as tusks.
This drone of activity,
It is all too much for me.

Faces dumb as naked dolls.
He strips them, licking them with stars
Like potential girlfriends
Or meats to be weighed.

Young Love

When you were five
And I was six,
We would hold hands
Just like this.

When you were nine
And I was ten,
We made a pact
To never tell, and then:

You began to tell me every word
That escaped from your lips, with cold secret stares.
A look or a glance through long
Fingertips. Your beautiful face.

I see you sitting by the stair, your body
Tight in hot sun, a sad lamb
On stage. And when I have passed you
Flushed red raw, I want to remember

How young we were.
Splayed out across the pitch
Like baby starfish, pink and pinched
As tongue’s blood.

Our father and mother are in silent reverie,
With knotted wrists and electric hair,
Nodding and clapping, as dumb waiters do
To our games. When we are together we are together.

Today we are family as the ill
Walk in lines, with shaken smiles that marry us.
Mother, to me you are a figure of fun.
Father, you are a child when you wake up each morning

And We Are Hiding Now

For some time they sat in the cornfield
And spoke like dull mice
About what would be done.
When the sun, a ruined fruit

Ripped the dilute garden growth
And spread a red alarm over tall shears
The eldest was heard to say
“Bury them in the cellar.”

Skins of lice lamented
Over the pulsing stalks,
Their drones blanched in the air
Curdled and hot.

The house was distant and brown
Weeping a creeping shadow from within,
That seemed to warn: ‘Keep Out’.
A blaze from the forgotten.

Old plastic swing swung over the perimeter,
A goodbye, flinch.

The sky was high and blue.
In the giant shoots
Lurking softly and surreal,
Two ducklings on the gilded shore.

The sea was swimming with flushed young men
Severing feathered heads
With long silver scissors.
Pointed throrns in a paper box.

The woman roared like the man.
“Stop”, said the girls
With frilled socks.
Once the heavens were purple

Like a bruise, the corn
Grew cold and wet.
The house stood waiting, a deadened bulb
With a swift march

They advanced through the field,
Cutting stems.

She Chose Red

It is Winter.
He dragged her through the snow,
Her heart in her hand.
She was trying to be special.

In her room
Is a barbed cage.
She made it herself.
She waits inside with a needle in the dark.

Exiled.
Chewing her own hair.
They don’t talk to her.
Her mouth is full of hair.

She chose red.
Dreamer, how did you get so low?
Anywhere you go,
She will follow.

She is a slut called Jezabel.
There is sunshine in an empty place.
Her birthday: a black death.
The rush she gets. Machina.

Her cousin is a spider.
Withdraw.
Now give her an inch, a mile.
She is a beautiful liar.

Aphrodisiac.
She crawled out from the sea.
A horse drinks from the dark water
Dieing, vapourous.

The Pandora Lady

She was like Morgan;
Very pretty, though grey
As Autumn rain
And rigid and pale in mood
Like Lazarus or a different Goddess.

Her sparkle fell in a flurry of stars
From a beautiful boat in the sky.
She dreamed she was married.
Sometimes she wished her name was Pandora,
Then transformed into herself again in shame.

 

Natalie Crick has found delight in writing all of her life and first began writing when she was a very young girl. Her poetry is influenced by melancholic confessional Women’s poetry. Her poetry has been published in a range of journals and magazines including Cannons Mouth, Cyphers, Ariadne’s Thread, Carillon and National Poetry Anthology 2013.

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