trout [ 6 ]
Tracy Slaughter: [1 , 2 , 3 ]
  biography day

At twenty-seven she learns her ladders and the baby falls. 

Two years back she moved in a white house where the windows had broken sashes. 

At two she developed a way of losing her breath but winning arguments. 

A piece of concrete holds the clues, a handprint, pressure vein, gum, dandelion. 

The baby fed for three months badly, thin milk splitting her nipple. 

By twenty-nine she may grow sunflowers and believe in herself. 

The x-ray of her left wrist shows it was broken but will not say how. 

Custody arrangements have been made for the benefit of everyone. 

Some time later destiny took love from her like a piece of skin. 

At sixteen, of course, a religious experience. 

Ten years is the maximum for holding your motherís hand, after that you must cross 

roads without your fingers signalling emptiness. 

Twenty-one is a day to throw out clothes, blue make-up and lockable diaries, where 

people stand for capital letters. 

The lost breath held itself together in a hidden sac of her body. 

A diligent and friendly student, but hampered by frequent illnesses, nevertheless a 

virtuouso Lady Macbeth. 

You notice looking at your child that the eye is constructed of tiny fibres. 

Men liked nineteen heavily painted, wet with the sound of yes. 

At six the sunshine tells a long fairy-tale, kisses push up under her skin. 

The lost breath practices poetry trying to find the sounds it should have made. 

One day at the races she remembers an injured horse. 

She turned up once in a dress her mother made and her stepmother took her home. 

For the millenium she plans to nail something desperate to the wall. 

And the stall floor clotting hotly with its arterial pumpings. 

Mummyís here, go back to sleep. 

At seven she spent a whole afternoon in her grandfatherís gardern, swotting with a 

tennis racket at white butterflies. 

At nine the solicitor arrived to allocate matrimonial property, her mother made soft 

noises and smashed dishes in the sink. 

At dinner time you must eat what youíre given. 

Seventeen butterflies in the strings. 

She takes voices out of her depth and bites the side of her fingers, paste is applied to 

her hands but the bad sounds travel around her head. 

At two the baby takes a three dollar map of the earth to bed. 

  © 1999

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