Shadows At Night

Shadows dance:

The shape of your ghost

A pornography of orchids,

Soft, quiet as new snow.

Night fulls.

Our bodies grow limbs.

They rise and sink,

Feeling for a heartbeat.

Longing, melting

Like dead bees pouring

From a smoking hive.

Tulip petals close.

The stars will not hold back.

They starve for light.

Moon dreams on,

Clumsy as lead.


Like Smoke


November curled itself around my

Spine like cigarette smoke,


Seeping into me.

December froze in her grey web.


I want to wake from the dark,

Sleep naked in moon-cooled dirt,


Deep in the night where graves

Spread like black pollen.


I am where the wind

Snuffs out candles,


Can touch a curtain like a ghost,

Like a bell.


Like the dead I escort

Sap to want.





That deluge of haze

Just before sundown.


Spring shakes Winter’s hand



Now the day has truly gone.


Street lamps glow

A sodium pink


When blue milk pacifies,

The copper moon sliding up a sleeve of glass,


Her luminous lake

Drowning the city,


A black felt hat against

Heaven’s empty dome.


An indigo deer slips back

Through the shadow of night-green cedar,



Teasing with promise.

I could not look away.





I carved your bones

Into a tree.

Discovered you in velvet petals

Powdered with pollen,

White feathers sullied by soil,

Mouth smeared pink with juice,

Seeds shining from tiny teeth,


Suddenly sullen

Inside the wild strawberry plant.


Perhaps my hands offend you.

They nurture sin.

They lose their colour,

Pulled back as skin from Godly grape.


They spin spider silk,

Stand at the edge

Of a field shivering,


Licked to sleep.


Breath of Sun


Winter clouds are haloed between

Leaden sea and sky


Where Periwinkle blossoms

On the mountain ridge.


The Eucalyptus stirs

And scents the air.


Breath of sun alights,



Slipping into browning leaves

To surrender the past,


Dispossessed of sleep,

Drifting into dark;


A ghost, moon-bleached.

Moths swoop and twist,


Grey petals

Softened with savanna light.


Dying relics flake away.


Natalie Crick, from the UK, has found delight in writing all of her life and first began writing when she was a very young girl. Her poetry has been published or is forthcoming in a range of journals and magazines including Ink in Thirds, The Penwood Review, Interpreters House, The Chiron Review and Rust and Moth. Her work also features or is forthcoming in a number of anthologies, including Lehigh Valley Vanguard Collections 13. This year her poem, ‘Sunday School’ was nominated for the Pushcart Prize.

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