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Cooled Boiled Water

by Maeve McKenna -

I am trying to bend a mind.

Can I imagine the moon as a suffocating balloon,

ready to inhale, siphoning lungs from the earth —

which is a cardboard box of discarded toys,

metal and plastic? Or stars the eyes of a wolf-pack

in the dark world forest,

glaring behind spindly trees —

which are needles in a pin cushion. Just that.

Or rivers as paths guzzling swamped ground,

drowning the carcasses of roads that lead home —

which is a state of familiarity only.

Or bodies as a surface to sketch new ways,

tracing escape routes through veins —

which are tracks of blood —

which are cooled boiled water

dredging metal and plastic from a cardboard box,

while starry eyes take aim with spindly pins

and puncture flesh,

and the river path devours familiarity,

and sketches are cuts on a skin map

bleeding cooled, boiled, water.


Maeve McKenna is a poet living in Sligo, Ireland. Her poetry has been placed in several international poetry competitions, published in Mslexia, Orbis, Sand Magazine, Fly on the Wall, Channel Magazine among others, and widely online. Maeve was a finalist in the Jacar Press Eavan Boland Mentorship Award 2020, third in the Canterbury Poet of The Year in 2021 and a Pushcart nominee, 2022. Her debut pamphlet will be published in February, 2022, by Fly On The Wall Press.


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