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April 17, 2024

2 poems

Ian Flatman

I’ve seen the documentary the person before me watches before, so I watch instead for anything I recognise as closer to home.


You know lions

lick lions lick

their paws, tongue

searching whiskers

and claws, lick

the steam of a wound,

that forgetful soul

of a soft body dead

in the shade,

tongue rolled out

licking the dirt.




Children keep playing


And a couple of them loudly

talk about being

                    on the trampoline

being birds

being higher than the last

jump being able to fly


and I’m trying not to use them

in another poem

like we like to use children

to justify life, careless

with the things they love


when one of them loudly says “bye”

and waves to the spot shrinking in the sky


I look for their friend, and maybe

they have figured it out

nobody seems concerned

and the only sound is calm


adult voices “don’t worry

they always come back

when they’re tired or hungry”