Quite Contrary

This was the only place she felt at peace,
our Mary, in her haphazard back garden.
She loved to tend it, plant things to grow,
fashioned a path like rosary from stones.
She rubbed slate together trying for sparks
but found instead she could draw patterns.
Mary avoided cracks and spaces between,
afraid she might disappear. She lingered
on the flat rounds, safe holy wafer discs,
dissolved old troubles on her salty tongue.
At the end of her garden, a rotting wooden
shed for self-harm and tears on bad days.
She never could understand how the hell
she was supposed to hear the sea in shells.



Pat Edwards is a writer, reviewer and workshop leader. Her work has been widely published including in Prole, Magma, Atrium and others. Pat hosts Verbatim poetry open mic nights on the Powys/Shropshire border and is curator of Welshpool Poetry Festival. She published her debut pamphlet, Only Blood, with Yaffle Press in 2019, and her next is due later this year with Indigo Dreams.