Lucie McLaughlin; Palm

Palm 

There is a gap

opposite

it is where Orpheus

used to be.

Yellow diggers carve into

rubble pits

the long pendulum

of a crane sways

slightly from

side to side. 

 

I filmed a part of

Orpheus

before the final

destruction.

The legs of a beautiful

brass staircase 

open to the air

gulls let in to the 

inside of the

stained glass heights.

The lost affair; 

a hard drive broken, 

where once I placed 

the mutilated limbs. 

 

Other films remain 

the flashes weakly 

flickering 

writhing along 

white sides 

of buildings

the ends 

of trees. 

 

Vocalising across 

the forecourt 

and onto the grey storm 

of the Lough.

Smoothing over or 

pressing down

 like the palm of 

the wind does.

Indentations

depressions

caressing the 

surface, 

the flat grey.

 

I touch my lips 

with the tips 

of my fingers

not knowing where 

the texture of 

paper

will take me. 

 

Into the well of its 

disgrace I fell.

It sees good in the 

rain and the space 

of the writing, 

where a voice 

sounds a work

undoes these paths

branches

rivulets

at the lowest ebb.

  

And turning

the crest and swell 

of incalculable waves

there’s a seal’s head 

gawping at me.

When the seal slips, 

wordlessly, under the

robe of invulnerability 

the smooth 

wood of the desk, 

bone dry. 

Within a 

glass walled temptress

shuttering up the 

poured concrete

walls of late,

stairwells whistle 

and shake

*

Biography

Lucie McLaughlin speaks, performs, makes and writes with a fervent rhythm, symptomatic of a way (and multiple ways) of thinking through poetry. She has performed her poetry in London, Paris, Berlin and Belfast and her recently commissioned poem Slime was released by AQNB in 2017. 

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