How to Write Poetry (3)

This one, from my book The Knitted Curiosity Cabinet, was just voted the best poem in January’s edition of Reach magazine.

How to Write Poetry (3)

Climb to the top of the garden at midnight;
Feet in wellies, cold, half-asleep.
The stars drift like plankton: miles deep
Shoals of tiny creatures; living light.

Trail your hand in the water, feel the chill
As phosphorescence coats your fingers. Lay
Your head back and let it swim, feel the sway
Of the endless ocean of night spilling over the hill.

Reach up your fist and drag the moon from the sky.
Smear it over the paper. Take a scrap
Of bitter dark, a sliver of frost, perhaps
A breath of emerald aurora, if you are lucky.

Pour the ink-black ocean over everything.
Paddle your fingers in luminescence, smear it
All over the page. Dry it in the slight,
Trembling, first clear breath of morning.

Bend down to wash in dew. Shake off the night.
Time to go in now: it’s starting to get light.