Ever noticed how your legs
stop moving when you fly?
As a crow makes a sudden
dive up through the mirror.

I too have mapped my body
against clouds of glass,
masked like a surgeon
on the Canterbury 17.

On arrival she says she’ll cut my
hair, touched only by children
or lovers. I unfold my words,
breathing in a circle, going up.



Carolyn Oulton is Professor of Victorian Literature at Canterbury Christ Church University. She teaches on the Creative and Professional Writing BA and is Project Lead for Kent Maps Online in collaboration with JSTOR Labs. Her most recent collection is Accidental Fruit (Worple).