Woman of hunger (féar gortach)

By

have you heard the hungry grass? 

forever foraging this fussy forest. 

I mean. I didn’t mean,

to intrude your phantom famine 

.

to love breath on my skin, take a comb to my tugs in the shallows, 

as willows brush my arms. I wish for its cold – perhaps

I wouldn’t ask for silver. grabbing empty handfuls of pennies in my well. a look, 

the shine of the full; never to fill again. 

.

are you leaving soon? scared of my face? 

my questions and your answer? 

.

tender field of remnants of where I tread in life 

burrowed into the appetite of the olive tufts. glowing as I reach- 

finding scraps deep within the trees, tied like oaths

 to ululating golden trinkets, swimming like goldfish with pointy teeth 

I hide from nattering undergrowth berries, 

pull thorns from my ribcage, rip frosty conkers from my eyes 

dripping, trembling, bursting,

bramble gut, grown from my greening veins. 

.

they watch / they scratch / they yawn 

.

hang a lantern on these cursed branches 

as cages of fireflies radiate where I couldn’t

.

I couldn’t agree to lie forever. 

Illustration by Rosie Bromiley

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