Poetry inspired by Plath & Sexton by Sarah Wallis

Bio: Sarah Wallis lives by the sea on the East Coast of Scotland, since moving from Yorkshire x4 years ago. She publishes cross genre, highlights are poetry in The Yorkshire Poetry Anthology, Abridged The Violet Hour, flash fiction at Ellipsis, a winning story at The Welkin and art in Feral. Recent work includes hybrid poem art at Osmosis, in print journals Gutter, Fragmented Voices, Eat the Storms –print and podcast. Chapbooks include Medusa Retold, Precious Mettle and How to Love the Hat Thrower.

Old Eign Hill

after Anne Sexton’s 45 Mercy Street

In my dream 
I’m walking up and down the Hafod Road
and searching for a sign to - Old Eign Hill – 
but no, I’m on the wrong hill, and every time. 
I know the number, the varnished door, 
the clean, clear glass to see visitors through, 
and just in case, the Brasso’d doorknock, 
the shining bell.  

The two levels, off white kitchen and apple
green bathroom, changed since last time, 
so now the old suite is sat, hunched and bitten, 
smashed up slowly, as if a giant passing 
the garage took a bite, the teeth marks left 
by your hammers as time devoured the toilet 
bowl - you put it in the bin, bit 
by bit, to fool the council. 

The house is one of china 
for best, and good matched cutlery, 
tablecloths of old Irish linen, fetched out
and cut glass crystal goblets full of wine, 
the table set for Christmas cheer, I know it 
well, the kitchen steaming, laughter 
simmering, along with the distant chatter 
and song of generations 

long since 
passed, and passed again 
right through the varnished wooden door.  

Time is getting on, the hour is set, 
and yet, and yet, although I know 
I know it well, I cannot, cannot find 
this hidden, vanished Old Eign
street sign, sighing to the silent, winding hill. 


after Plath ‘Out of the ashes I rise with my red hair’

My grandmother was a miracle everyday she lived, 
middle child marvel of Celtic descent, strong and red 
haired, akin the warrior queens of the old songs, rising 
from sick beds like the phoenix, fought off tuberculosis,
once, twice, diphtheria, pleurisy, peritonitis (appendicitis 
gone much worse) mini strokes and eleven years of vascular 
dementia. The One Hundred Lives of my Grandmother
born 1920 on the Welsh coast, taken to the Salisbury Plain 
where she missed the sea and two brothers sent to school 
but she, enraged, made to work, opening the Tidworth 
Post Office at sixteen, saluted by Churchill, barrelling by 
in his chauffeured Daimler limousine... Dementia was a low 
blow but still she rose to play Holy Terror - always an edgy 
sense of fun –spooking her carers in white gown, white halo... 


By davidlonan1

David writes poetry, short stories, and writings that'll make you think or laugh, provoking you to examine images in your mind. To submit poetry, photography, art, please send to feversofthemind@gmail.com. Twitter: @davidLOnan1 + @feversof Facebook: DavidLONan1

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