Karen Dennison

Poet and artist


Scratching at the Surface of Tears

As part of Abegail Morley’s series of posts on The Poetry Shed on the theme of Unlocking Creativity, I compiled a film as a prompt with a call out to poets to respond. Jill Munro wrote a fantastic poem in response and here is the resulting film poem. The written poem can also be found below.

Jill Munro author picJill Munro has been published in major poetry magazines including The Frogmore Press, Popshot Quarterly and The Rialto and her work has been anthologised by Paper Swans Press, Candlestick Press and Calder Valley Press. She won the O’Bheal Five Words International Poetry competition 2017/18 and was 2nd in this year’s competition. Jill’s first collection ‘Man from La Paz’ was published in 2015 by Green Bottle Press. She won the Fair Acre Press Pamphlet Competition 2015 with ‘The Quilted Multiverse’, published April 2016. Jill was awarded a Hawthornden Fellowship for 2018 and lives and writes in the depths of Ashdown Forest.


Scratching at the surface of tears

There’s no magic rubber wands to wipe away these tears.
I drive down to you again, an undertow drags me past closed cafés
and open Costas, a route my car can auto-drive alone
to a place I once called home, across roundabout after roundabout,
past parks with empty swings and other kinds of roundabouts
to a time-lapsed place hyphenated to the ocean
where huge wind turbines turn above fields,
great grey gulls hanging, wind-surfing their way to sea,
by huge pylons disappearing to nothing in the sky,
the same as you are now.

Do you dream of grey days, splashing on like this,
of twirling brollies, can you remember in technicolour any more?
I know I will have to travel here again, my welling tears
rain-dropping the screen, I will still feel the pull
to come this way while anything left of you remains.

Jill Munro