To the storm witch’s lover by Kate Garrett

Take this hawthorn twig and keep it close – collected
from the forest floor in exchange for a copper penny –

if the gusts threaten to take you, if the lightning flashes
sickly over the roiling ocean, the charm will keep you.

I’ve caught fair winds for you in my hair, braided it tight.
If the king’s ships chase your sloop, I’ll know – I’ll see

across the world through the hagstone, undo a knot,
blow a kindly breeze to your sails with a kiss. Come

back home to me with wine and gold; once again we’ll
cheat the noose, lay low – certain as the moon, the tide.

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Kate Garrett is the author of several poetry books of varying lengths, most recently The saint of milk and flames (Rhythm & Bones Press, April 2019) and To Feed My Woodland Bones (Animal Heart Press, September 2019). Born and raised in rural southern Ohio, she moved to England 20 years ago, where she still lives in Sheffield with her husband, five children, and a cat. More information about Kate and her work can be found here: www.kategarrettwrites.co.uk

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