Physics of sound

It’s on the attack; though I turn away
it still marches into my head

its most effective ambush is from silence
a click, a drip, sudden creak, then gone

but it can bounce like an acrobat
then bounce again.. again.. again

strokes my belly with deep bass
shrill-shrieks the enamel off my teeth

tells the story of its source, the history
of the throat that shapes it. As with your voice

that I could catch in any shouting crowd
when you were alive

and hear now in this empty darkness
calling me, saying my name.



Ruth Aylett teaches and researches computing in Edinburgh. Her poems are widely published in magazines (eg. The North, Butcher’s Dog, Prole) and anthologies (eg. Mancunina Way, Umbrellas of Edinburgh) and her pamphlet Pretty in Pink, about the lives of woman, was published in Feb 2021 by 4Word. For more see