Skip to main content

Blue by Lisa Coates

I was so used to seeing them

behind coke-bottle bottoms

that I never knew 

just how blue they were.

Not until I saw you lying in that hospital bed. 

You didn’t need glasses then, 

you struggled to open 

your eyes at all 

but you managed it for me 

and I was taken aback by the blue

so incongruous in that white room. 

Out of place 

in a face weary of fighting time and disease.

Two blue suns in an altostratus sky, 

struggling to shine. 

A colour pop in black and white, the corners 

vignetted for that agéd look.

It was blue who read aloud over 

my shoulder, observed

the road as I learned 

how to drive, gazed 

through the viewfinder 

capturing family moments on film.

Blue watched me grow.

The last time I saw blue, they asked 

if you knew who was there.

You opened your eyes and called me your darling.

You died at 8.05.

The 25th on a warm August day.

The sun shone.

The sky blue.


Lisa J Coates is a multi-disciplinary artist based in Yorkshire. She is a musician, writer, photographer and theatre maker. Her writing has been published in The Lady Magazine, and in the upcoming issue of South Bank Poetry Magazine. As a professional singer she has performed internationally in opera and on the concert platform, as well as recording for labels such as Delphian, Touch, and Naxos, and has appeared on television and BBC Radio 3. 


Popular posts from this blog

Home by Jessa Forest

Home scratches at her shingles with tree branch fingers, pulls the air conditioning unit close to her grimy aluminum siding, and keens an empty song of mourning. We found her wandering the tornado snarled wild three months ago, starved and lonely. She doesn’t know how to take care of herself, you see? We fed her shards of dining room tables, kindling for the fireplace, and cast iron bathtubs clawed feet first. She was slow to recover so we gutted her plumbing, ripped out her nerves, and rewired the electricity. She let the water in every time it rained so we put a new roof on her and let her out for regular walks around the wolf pen. Let her mingle with the vultures, I said, let her feel useful and clean up the dead but no one wanted to listen. We found rot an mold in her corners, infused her insulation with antibiotics, and quarantined her for two weeks while she belched ladderback chairs, sofa cushions, wind chimes, and broken bookcases. She still has her bad days. After feeding time

“Are You So Tired Then, Stranger?” by Ace Boggess

  —Dick Allen, “B&B”    Wind exhausts with its icy fists. Knives of rain wear me down, & leaves in their helicopter swirls like leaflets dropped from a plane. October depletes me, & November. They’ve too much busyness. They send me spinning, dancing, lonely with the rake, the broom. I surrender, collapsing like an old barn, debris of me piling in a chair with clear view of the television.  News is on. It spends me. Talk of politics, also. I’d like  to shut up the voices that fatigue. They hum like a B-flat in the pipes. They bicker & scold, condemn. They expend me like carrying  groceries up a flight of stairs  until I’m too drained to care  which side they’re on. --- Ace Boggess is author of six books of poetry, including  Escape Envy  (Brick Road Poetry Press, 2021),  I Have Lost the Art of Dreaming It So , and  The Prisoners . His writing has appeared in  Michigan Quarterly Review, Notre Dame Review, Harvard Review, Mid-American Review,  and other journals. An ex-c

Paths by O.T. Park

I like walking worn down tracks Where the beat of human feet Has steadily marked the time. Paths where trees eclipse the sky and where dabbled light anoints The knotted and gnarled ground. Long lanes scarred by raised roots Which form illegible inscriptions; Where vegetation creates a nave and the trail itself an endless aisle. A placid place that celebrates Feet moving in communion. --- O.T. Park lives and works in Guildford. He has had poems published in Eye Flash Poetry, The Dawntreader and The Cannon's Mouth.