‘She’ and other poems by Ceinwen E. Cariad Haydon

You must not

I did, I did.
And, afterwards
wind whips, rain falls.
I cannot see beyond
waterfalls sheeting down
from miserable eyes,
sluicing nose, cheeks, chin
and feel etched trails
of aged laughter lines,
awash with running snot.
I slap my face,
to blot out inner pain.
Fingerprints mark shame,
sting of secret sin
secreted on my skin,
stigmata aflame.
Lust chose me,
I chose you.
I did, I did.
You must not.


I didn’t see young Icarus fall
from the sky that day,
I didn’t see the rays of sun
melt his wings away.
And I didn’t see his strong white bones
stripped of flesh by gannets.
Nor did I hear his last faint cry,
nor did I see the fret shroud down,
nor did I ask the reason why
he ever tried to fly so high.
But I did dream a resting place,
but I did dream a mountain stream,
but I did dream a place to lie,
but I did dream he waxed again,
but I did dream he kissed my face,
but I did dream he melted me.
And I remember words he sang
and I remember smelling young
and I remember tasting sweat
and I remember sharing breath
and I remember touching down
as I remember how he drowned.


                    after Mark Doty Ineradicable Music
She gestated words for years.
I lack a birthing bed, she said
and to find one was her heart’s desire,
a place to labour hard. She who’s stirring.
Could she trance herself
to write? And even as
she dreams and wavers,
whispering poetic lines,
the newborn secrets of her heart,
she knows her voice comes
lyrical and stronger
if she dares to speak aloud.
And though years were wasted,
to have kept silent and denied
she longed to scribe her verse
would have been so much worse.
Had she been cursed to muteness
or deaf to those inspired beats
that leave her spellbound,
craving more creation, she would die.

sci-fi nightmare

suns dawned in rivers
stars stippled mudbanks
waterfalls drenched skies
red grass called hither
worms crawled up my flanks
skulls flew empty by
mountains dove down cliffs
wide eyes swallowed air
ears waxed to silence
my feet would not shift
scree slopes stopped to stare
bones talked chalk nonsense
colours crazed to black
monsters talked secrets
my clothes were all wrong
thoughts began to crack
devils took my debts
to hell I was flung

Was That Me?

Sometimes, I feel I live on 
                                        in remainder time.
There have been so many lives, all mine; 
                                                                different days with different casts 
                                                                                                                   of actors on the stage. 
Looking back, 
                     confusion often reigned.
My days, 
             like beads of wood or glass or precious stones,
                                                                                  adorned my costumes,
held me moment-tight
                                  until things changed again, again and then again.
And yet, 
            each bead mundane or bright
                                                         is threaded on a single string.
With each new play, new role, new time,
how did I dress my body?
                               How did I learn my lines?
                                           All my lives are mine and mine. 
                                                    But who or what am I?

She and other poems are © Ceinwen E. Cariad Haydon

Ceinwen E. Cariad Haydon lives in Newcastle upon Tyne, UK, and writes short stories and poetry. She has been published in web magazines and print anthologies. These include Fiction on the Web, Literally Stories, Alliterati, Stepaway, Poets Speak (whilst they still can), Three Drops from the Cauldron, Snakeskin, Obsessed with Pipework, The Linnet’s Wing, Blue Nib, Picaroon, Amaryllis, Algebra of Owls, Write to be Counted, The Lake, Ink, Sweat and Tears, Riggwelter, Poetry Shed, Southbank Poetry, Smeuse Bandit Fiction and Atrium and with work coming up in Marauder, Prole and The Curlew.

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