March 2021

Back to Issue 9


By J V Birch

I have been disappearing since December,

in a room full of absence, chill, alarmed time,


each week a different chair to hold a little

less of me. Treatment is given by disposable


touch, masked smiles and words to gentle

my falling. It slips in with my pulse, runs mad


and knowing to pare back where I quietly ruin. 

It empties my skin, paper-thins my defence,


making me newborn-naked again. I drift in and

out like melancholy music, let thinking wander 


to mindless places, as I weather this leaving.