Best Devon Poem 2009 - Jennifer Moore

She says it's for the best

strapping me into my brown-knit wings,
a kiss for every tear that slips
down powdered make-me-proud cheeks,
I-love-you-I-love-you stitched
into each woollen feather.

No more goodbyes, just the heaving flap
of up and away, through the smoking sky,
gas mask tight against my duffled chest
to keep my heart from slipping.
No looking back as the city bleeds
beneath my booted feet,
as the charred clouds
swallow me,

just the aching flap
of my brown-winged desertion,
the knitted slap of wool on wind,
bearing me onwards to shatterproof skies,
to the warring cats' wail and the cockerel's all clear
to the crickets who'll hum her lullabies.