Zoe Siobhan Howarth-Lowe

Zoë has two pamphlets (from Half Moon Books & Hedgehog Press) and her First Collection is forthcoming with Indigo Dreams in 2021.

Her work has appeared in various Anthologies and Journals.

Twitter: @ZSHowarthLowe

Website: www.zshowarthlowe.com

Children Who Come And Go

 Rounded belly,
 swelling year after year,
 the texture of melon rind.
 Baby born only to die,
 over and over.
 Growing in the same crook of the same hip.
 These ogbanje – the children who come and go.
 Born over and over,
 same woman, same cradle, same belly – overstretched.
 Full of life that lasts only as long as they are overgrown by skin.
 Born again into this cloying air, 
 listening to the scritch scritch of a mother scratching the dirt 

Study of Movement

She has closed eyes.
 Hair sweeping in all directions,
 every movement captured -
 from here to here,
 to here,
 to here.
 A kaleidoscope of movement.
 But there,
 in the centre spiralling out.
 A closed eye.
 half hidden – heavy lidded.
 Bubbling under the canvas,
 bulging through the brushstrokes.
 Hidden in each fractured change of step -
 in every sweep and curve of movement.
 A thrown arm becoming an eyelash.
 The twist of a knee becoming the twists in the corner of the eye.
 An eye,
 lurking in the picture,
 waiting to open.
 Leaching colours from the breast and belly to construct an iris beneath.
 The eye is closed,
 waiting to wink out at you,
 with colour stolen from a fading canvas. 

The Curb Alongside

 A woman, stationed precisely
 between statues of George Washington;
 faces destroyed by weather;
 the crush and heave;
 endless; dug beneath
 the sturdy squalor;
 the visible lunatics;
 stunned; baffled; fleshless;
 blazing with lesions;
 the pungent, meaty-smoke;
 the bleat and the strum,
 of three boys,
 and a girl
 chasing pigeons.
 A quick spatter of an awkward moment,
 she turns her mouth away;
 offering her cheek;
 a corner of reluctant reflex.
 An exercise in poetry sculpting – using pages 14-15, The Hours, Michael Cunningham 

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