sheena blackhall

(18/8/1947 / Aberdeen)

A Sequence of Micro-Fictions


1. It's a mystery, even now.
A plough, a field,
Three black crows, wheeling.

2. Everything had changed.
Everything was the same.
He wiped her face
From the cold plate of his memory.

3. When Dermott spoke on the phone
People shook their heads
His talk not worth the price
Of an old potato.

4. On the darkest evening,
When a saxophone blows subversively in Old Manhattan,
A gun rocks in its cradle
A gangster's lullaby
Like an earwig curled in candyfloss

5. Far out at sea, the Mayor's wife
Creamed the make-up from her cheeks
The ocean turned in its bed
As the Heavens opened the floodgates

6.Across the table
There are unexpected intrusions, admissions
`I forgive her, ' he said
Folding his hands on his lap
Like pristine napkins

7.Grief must have its turn
Glued wings come unstuck
Regrets clump like tea leaves
Round the rim of the cup

8.Her villainous cat
Plays cricket with a bird
The letterbox rains enticements
Mrs Buchanan shuffles to the window.

9.I whittle time like a clothes-peg
Cloudy days flap on the line
Rain falls inside me in No-man's land.

10.Behind the doors of the locked ward
Patients suspect everyone
Leapfrog from reason to mania
Tangled narratives.
Memories etched with acid

11.He kept his foot in the door
Of trout and salmon
His fingers played on their scales
Weighing them for the black drapes of the air

12.She left without paying the bill
For a strange bed,
Like a shy beast nudging its way
Through unknown pasture

13.Summer spreads its wares
Like a salesman chasing a deadline
Oil clings to the steering wheel
Like a bumblebee on a scythe.

Submitted: Sunday, February 21, 2010

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