Gertrude’s Song

for Remi Graves


step through the stave

straight black lines

will become soft

like cobwebs, like spider webs

and stick

in your hair, to your face

but you will swipe them away.

what lives on the other side

of this notated fear and joy

are two sides of the same mirror –

which are you looking into

on the rim of snare

in the shine of cymbal?


love is not unlike music

a crotchet will chip at your walls

a semibreve will loosen your shadows

a breve will teach breath

              will teach breath

both ask of you, surrender

to the unknown selves within, waiting

Unpublished poem, Toni Stuart 2017, used by permission of the author.

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