Sunday 23 October 2022

Five Poems by Susan Wilson


The Easy Beats

Sport at school for me was definitely a lesson,

you cannot be good at everything.

At junior school I had scored goals in handball

and here I had even served an ace in tennis,

but as for netball, well.

That day Miss Bentley asked us to assemble our own teams

so the girls who were not netball stars in the making

were left until last.

We stood together,

seven academics in brown plimsolls,

where we all find ourselves at some point,

still learning how to catch and throw that ball,

yet exercising a sense of humour.

We called ourselves The Easy Beats.

A win against us was like standing around

waiting for nothing to happen

and nothing did happen for

“Goalie” Gray, “Basher” Bond, “Tough Tips” Tipton,

“Loony” Lewis, our captain, “Logging” Lipman,

“Rover” Ritterband and me,

“Whizzer” Wilson as goal shooter,

which is why there were never any goals.

A laughter we shared

unlike the laughter we heard

as the team spirit of the sportier girls sweated taunts and jibes.

But where would you stand –

with yourself and what you are –

or would you drop your ball and run to catch theirs?

Forgetting that once the school shoes were back on your feet

and your netball kit was hanging up in the changing room

the examination grades would have us scoring all the goals,

once again.


Feed Thy Fear

He’s hungry and you’re there,

ignore him if you dare.

I guarantee you won’t succeed

in fending off his fervent need.

To be out on an excursion

is inadequate diversion,

for he’s smarter than you think.

Your heart will surely sink

when he fixes your attention

on the cracks in your protection.

He gets ready to consume

while you flounder in your gloom.

He’ll pounce on your despair

and drag you to his lair

to feed upon your tears and cries

as you wipe the failure from your eyes.


The Blessed Angel Teddy of Tralee

Soft, sadly eyed, did you foresee?

I miss you

I miss you both

my present has untied itself from the past

though your gold wings still embrace the promise

to keep us safe with a cushioned shield

Little bear

guardian of a four-wheeled charge

I am the prisoner of Romans 12.19

I search within a space

endlessly emptying of freshened grief

your conscience is free

avenge every tear that I have shed

Celtic champion

arise from the hidden place

unchain your wrath

widen your eyes

unseal your lips

stretch wide your paws

Blacken their eyes into blindness

slash their mouths into silence

pluck away their guilty limbs

drain the slime that is their blood

and pour it onto a ground I cannot see

Take your shield

crush the stones that are their hearts

collect every remnant of their being

cast it into the Lake of Fire

awaiting its wretched master

The waiting parking space will mourn

as I sinfully rejoice


The Acorns of Anguish

The grass.

A fresh green smell

of forever,


the acorns wiped

from the oak trees.

The swivel

of the wind

pulls the branches

and your hair,

with no voice

in its whisper.

Those acorns,

like the small

moments we shared.

Those oak trees,

like the tall

memories grown.


Out of Space

A thoughtless moment eased my mind into a vacuum,

like stepping between two spaceships without a suit

in an outer space with an inner face I could not see.

I felt a presence, closer to me than I was to myself.

It had been waiting.

It had its own air, thoughts and desires,

to be inhaled, shared and realised:

refuse and suffocate or

accept and breathe a death by my own hand.

I felt its smile as its words crawled over me:

unburden, do not care how, be open

and in that moment I knew that anything could come in –

and it did, dragging with it its own solution to every problem –

some take it.

A door closed.

Susan Wilson lives in East London and began writing poetry following the death of her mother in 2017. Her poems have been published by Lucy Writers, Snakeskin, Runcible Spoon, Dreich, Areopagus, Streetcake, Rue Scribe, Amethyst Review and Lothlorien. Prior to the pandemic she was a regular performer at “Spineless Authors”, a local open mic event. Her debut chapbook is “I Couldn’t Write to Save Her Life” (Dreich, 2021).


  1. Superb poems. Thank you!

    1. Thank you Anonymous - do I know you? Either way, thank you for liking my work. Susan Wilson

    2. Thank you Anonymous for liking my work, do I know you?


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