September 2017

Back to Issue 2

The Wedge

By Damen O'Brien

this, insistent pressure

awled in at the eyes,

chiselled in at the ears


because burbling pre-verbal

or unfocussed pre-literate

we were all awash in it,


all phonics and phonemes

were a froth of word water

until the narrow-band nail,


the trepanning hammer,

and the mattock of language

could open up granite,


and once the crack opens,

water expands, ice heaves

thoughts cleave to words,


in at the breach

come paradise or poison:

the way remains open.