Summer as thick as foliage, the city in waves,
haze; rank, sweet bins. Through neglect
or lack of imperative, I'm overgrown
like a garden. The hair comes up like worms.
There was a time I was shiny. Burned
from plucking, waxing, depilatory cream.
Bald as Mattel's finest. Sore, spurned,
the lonely go to seed in a summer bereft
of the sea, a slice of exotica. Remember
the boat? Green horizon, hammock of heat.
A man with a face like raw chicken
visored his eyes with his hand to see
the island where the potent frogs were tiny,
where the birdsong jangled like jewellery. Is it you
I miss? Or that sensuality? I'm overgrown.
The hair comes up like revolutionaries.
Louise Peterkin is a poet from Edinburgh. In 2016 she was a recipient of a New Writers Award from the Scottish Book Trust in the poetry category. She is the co-editor, along with Rob A.Mackenzie, of Spark: Poetry and Art inspired by the Novels of Muriel Spark (Blue Diode Press, 2018). She is an assistant poetry editor for The Interpreter's House. Her poems have appeared in many publications, including The Dark Horse, The Glasgow Review of Books, Magma and The North, and her first collection of poetry, The Night Jar, is soon to be published by Salt.