Three Poems by Kate Garrett

hag’s delight

drop down, slip from the trail
where a tunnel of earth carries
you to the river. it is a clear-
cold night lit by ice and stars:

you cut through the layers
of this world with a laugh 
like wood splitting. 

you have a hill for flying,
a month with two moons,
and a mouthful of blood. 

you need only a house
of sticks and stones
on the outskirts of the town. 

they keep a distance
uninvited, just how you like it—
but want to learn how to sit 
with eyes closed
listening to the dew become frost.

you remember: life seemed so grey
when your cheeks were still pink.

there are so many colours 
their eyes cannot yet see.

sorrow infected

cling to what you should forget 
(hands dug in, hanging from a cliff edge—
repeat each terrible detail: twisted, melted, 
cracked / metal, hair, fourteen ribs)

reports enlarge themselves inside 
your head. you hold this image 
high—make it your banner, how you 
tear at the scraps until your teeth 

and nails break brittle. all your rage
pools into boils, weighs you down
a little more each year—red-edged 
poison waiting for scalpel and flame.

blue stains scattered

these marks define you in little ways

each one a moment lifted from the dark
of a slow walk home at 3AM:

you are the creature in the street
when sensible people sleep

and you wake with a new piece
of evidence clinging to your arms,
your belly, or your legs

like wave-washed barnacles
like a flood of nightclub lights 
after the last song ends.

there are no bloodstains, only 
blue stains to fill the pale valleys
of your body

and each day’s lack of breath
against the mirror.

Kate Garrett lives in England and has a significant folklore, history, and horror obsession. Her writing is widely published – most recently in The Spectre Review, Green Ink Poetry, and Feral – and has been nominated for Best of the Net and Pushcart Prize. Find her at or on Instagram @thefolklorefaery

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