The Post-it night fits neatly
in its perfect yellow square.
Yellow not like American cheese
but a decommissioned coal mine
coughing up canaries.

It’s the archaeology of layers
that’s the most surprising:
A rubbing of a self portrait
revealing your great grandfather
smiling at you. The family cat
carrying a perfect copy of van Gogh’s
The Starry Night in its fur.
Your favourite song encoded
onto a blackbird’s feather.

The train sashaying its hips
against the enormity of the horizon
does so because it wants
to test the limits of pressure.

Whatever bounces back
comes through the windows
to pin you in the moment.
Embrace the pressure framing you,
be more than thinning sediment
holding layers together like cheap glue.


Christian WardChristian Ward is a UK-based poet who can be currently found in Wild Greens, Cold Moon Review, Discretionary Love, Chantarelle’s Notebook and Medusa’s Kitchen. Future poems will be appearing in Dreich, Uppagus and Impspired. He was recently shortlisted for the 2021 Canterbury Poet of the Year Competition and the 2021 Plough Prize.