from BARDO

The stars are in our belly; the Milky Way our umbilicus.

Is it a consolation that the stuff of which we’re made

is star-stuff too?

– That wherever you go you can never fully disappear –

dispersal only: carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen.

Tree, rain, coal, glow-worm, horse, gnat, rock.

Roselle Angwin

Thursday, 9 February 2017

Lost Species poem 22: Rachel McCarthy

Rachel McCarthy's poem here below whispers of her background as a scientist (former senior climate scientist at the Met Office Hadley Centre, where she specialised in the impacts of climate change, disaster risk reduction and science communication). 
It always adds an edge to a poem when two apparently divergent disciplines come together. Hope you all enjoy this one.

Ghost Shark

Millions of years on

Megalodon swims its half ghost 

through the ether of museum-space 

part-shark part-reconstructed cartilage 

top-jaw hoisted for a pig-eyed profile 

made an example of.

But who’s to say unequivocally

that at this exact moment she’s not 

holed-up in the wreck of an old war

nursing in the cold vault of our history

or charnel-mouthed over its huddled bodies 

who’s to say there’s no glint in her dead eyes.

After all where better to see-out extinction

than from beyond the last glimmer of sunlight 

where her movements sound like whispers
in our deep water soundings.

Who’s to say she isn’t just beyond our reach 

Who’s to say she shouldn’t stay that way.

© Rachel McCarthy

from Element

Element won the Laureate's Choice award 2015 – picked by Carol Ann as marking ‘one of the brightest new voices in British Poetry...brilliantly bold.’

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  1. So many beautiful, sad poems. I love the rhythm of this one too.

  2. Yes. I like too the unexpectedness of the poem, and its ending in particular.

    How's Rosie?


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