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1 Apr 2022

Sue
Finch

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New
Moon

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Apr 16th

Her Dress

Mar 18th

After Louise Richardson’s

Spun Cobwebs and Thorns

               She’s gone.

               And you have asked for her dress.


               They want to tell you to go home.


               Glancing at one another

               across the wide silence,

               each wants to shift the decision

               to the next.

               You hear someone say they will need time.


               Pinned out

               it offers you the shape of her –

               the place where her arm would have lifted

               in a dance, brings tears.


               What you really want

               is the scent of her,

               but in the darkest nights

               only the moon has witnessed it

               diluting, fading.


               You will not eat for days now;

               thorns tighten your throat,

               cold earth fills your nostrils.

               All you can taste

               is feathers on abandoned cobwebs.

Behind the poem...

I first encountered Louise Richardson’s piece Spun Cobwebs and Thorns at a workshop with the poet Pascale Petit. One of that day's activities was to choose from among the postcards Pascale had brought along one that we felt might act as a stimulus for writing a poem. I loved the delicate darkness of Louise Richardson's creation, and knew immediately that I wanted to write something to accompany such a powerful piece of art.