Poetry Archive Now Wordview 2020: New Cloth

Your pattern pinned itself to the fray of me

the first day. Not yet stitched, aligning

fragile tissue, judging bias – the wounded

cut carefully

always holding their breath.


When they remade you, I slept

on a hospital couch with your dress, bundled

like a woolen heart, to my nose. Five hours

inhaling-exhaling bargains

a short time to outfit a whole woman

into her own dear self.


We tied knots with every colour we could find.


Understand, love always gets down to the wisp

beyond fabric, to stroke

the finest thread of a person – our making looms

us legacies of holes –

you fear cutting yourself short, me

born running with scissors, and all of us

rippling fast towards the great unravelling


Yet the great thumping treadle of a heart can still say

now you’re mending – billow with the wind.

Recording provided as part of Poetry Archive Now: Wordview 2020. Used by permission of the author.

Poetry Archive Now Wordview 2020 Winners

Welcome to the Poetry Archive Now! WordView 2020 Collection. For the first time the Archive opened its doors wide to poets from around ...

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Ankh Spice

I'm a poet from Aotearoa (New Zealand). As a coastal island dweller, my poetry is 95% salt water, and often explores environmental change, myth, mental health, queer identity, and the persistent briefness of being human. More than 80 of my poems are published internationally, online and in print, and 4 have been nominated for the Pushcart Prize or Best of the Net. I'm co-editor at Ice Floe Press, and poetry contributing editor at Barren Magazine.


A special thank you to our WordView 2020 poets.

Chair of the Judging Panel, Imtiaz Dharker, says: “The hundreds of entries we received blew in to the Archive like a breath of pure, unpolluted air from all over the world, revealing something of the time we are living in, some telling it straight, some slant. It was exciting to check in to the Poetry Archive’s Youtube channel every morning and come upon one unexpected voice after another."

See the collectionWatch the full Wordview 2020 playlist