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Jill Penny: a poem



You were gone

before we could repair the rapture

fix the fracture

stem the bleed

assist the breath.

Your absence

lies alone now

swollen in a

hospital gown.

How are you dead?

How are you?

Your presence lingers

on the lane

around the piano

behind the silent sewing machine

through each season

of this terrible year

in the white flowers

and objects I reflect on

in my garden.

How can you not be here

in this wild white abstraction?

These poems are from Jill's award-winning pamphlet, In Your Absence, published by The Poetry Business in February 2021.


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