Three Poems

By Katharine Perry

Friday 13 March 2020

Breakfast TV showed
a photo of the sunrise
over Bridlington harbour.
The black boats silhouetted
against mauve and amber.
Naked masts reaching up,
spindly and tangled,
overlapping each other.
The dark parts now
a dystopian city skyline.
Where we used to walk
with Grandma and Grandad
looking for crabs locked
in dripping, seaweed cages.

5 April 2020

Locked in our garden
the first summer day in April 2020,
the sun so warm,
I peel off my thick black tights
for the first time and think,
are these my legs?
Pale and prickly
Ankles heavy with weight gained
making the babies
that now play on the grass.
Fat wrinkles round my knees.
Are these my legs?
The same legs
that were so long and smooth
to be touched across an old sofa
in Highbury Fields?
The same legs
that danced 2009 into 2010
in Soho with four heroin addicts,
one who is now dead.
The same legs
that walked round Paris high heeled,
bare to the thigh
and curved in love hearts.
That caught the eyes of men
I thought were too handsome for me.
That struggled up at dawn
to Machu Picchu once.
Yes, the same legs
that kept walking round Homerton Hospital
from 02:35 to 04:35 on 26 August 2019.
Changed, like everything, unrecognisable,
but still standing.
Staying, for now,
on our own little patch of earth,
running after my darlings.

15 May 2020

Every time I go outside
and smell the damp grass
in the settling light,
I think I’m somewhere else.
Trudging in flip flops to the toilet block
I want to eat croissants that crumble,
buttery flakes getting stuck to my fingers.

But stirring this pot
has an undeniable satisfaction of its own.
The Seductive weight of the cast iron,
The resistance against the wooden spoon
of the beans and the mince and the stock.
The perfect amount of pull,
drawing my thoughts under the bubbling juices.

I run The Mum Poem Press, a poetry publishing venture set up to share work which explores all aspects of motherhood and to support, encourage and connect mums who are writing poetry

These poems were tapped into the notes on my phone while rocking my baby son to sleep as part of a poetry diary I kept while looking after my 2 year old daughter and my 6 month old son during the UK national lockdown in Spring 2020.

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Bernie
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Bernie
7 months ago

Beautiful poems & very relatable – especially being a mummy to toddler girls aged 3 & 1. Thank you for sharing ❤

Katharine Perry
Guest
7 months ago
Reply to  Bernie

Thank you! My children are also 3 & 1 ☺️ If you’re a poet too, I run a writing group for mums called The Mum Poet Club ❤️

Let us know what you think of the Poetry and Covid project by completing this short survey… thank you!

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