Artwork: Dana Bordelon
What the Snow Said
Saints watch open-eyed
as I plenty the air
with intolerable light.
You scoop handfuls
moulding me in your image.
You wished for me,
guided me here
with prayer and with song.
from my hands
like rotten teeth.
Go to sleep child,
I will free the world
of its clanking.
Helen Ivory is a poet and artist. Her fourth Bloodaxe Books collection is Waiting for Bluebeard (May 2013) She has co-edited with George Szirtes In Their Own Words: Contemporary Poets on their Poetry Salt 2012. She teaches for the Arvon Foundation, The Poetry School and mentors for the Poetry Society. She edits the webzine Ink Sweat and Tears and is an editor for The Poetry Archive.
Artwork: Bob Cole
Don’t underestimate the skill of blankness.
The beauty of exquisite intent, when multiplied
into a universe, can be a terrible thing, weighted
and pure. Watch how it stills perception into memory,
whole cities at a time, like bullets, like babies’ breath,
the gods of the new century put implacably
in their place, the sun the jewel in its crown.
Born and raised in Kolkata, India, Ayesha Chatterjee has lived in England, the USA and Germany. She now resides in Toronto. Her poetry has appeared in several magazines including nthposition, Autumn Sky Poetry, Magma and The New Writer. Her first poetry collection The Clarity of Distance was published in 2011 by Calgary-based Bayeux Arts. She has a poem forthcoming in Eyewear Publishing’s global anthology, The Poet’s Quest for God; 21st Century Poems of Faith, Doubt and Wonder.
13 thoughts on “New year poems from Helen Ivory and Ayesha Chatterjee”
Lovely Shed, wonderful words, wonderful pictures. As an ex-Torontonian I’m always very glad to read work from someone who lives there. Thank you! xx Caroline
Thanks Caroline. I don’t envy the Toronto temperatures!
Two more great poems and wonderful artwork – when I think I don’t like winter it turns out work like this – thank you poets and Abegail. Your Shed has been brimful with inspiring surprises during this bleak season.
Beautiful poems and images – thank you
Glad you like them Vicky. I don’t want this selection to end. Mind you I probably should have included paintings of rain, rain and more rain.
Here in Canada, we are having snow, snow and more snow, and
cold, cold and more cold …. so this series of poems and artwork has cheered me up through the long night part of the winter: it’s felt like a celebration of the seasons. and an acknowledgement.of their importance. The Poetry Shed does a great job 🙂 Thanks. (I hope your wet weather in the UK moderates soon.)
I love this site – so happy to have found it – the paintings are wonderful and the poems tingle – thank you for letting me in the shed.
Thank you for your lovely comments about the Shed – do come back soon! Abegail
Gorgeous poems and very timely – Ayesha was on my list of poets to research so thank you 🙂
Oh great timing then. We met in 2008 (I think) on an Arvon course in Inverness and then somehow linked up again – but don’t know when or how, but glad we did.
Thanks for having me on this, Abi–and in great company too! Shout out to the other Canadians/ex-Torontonians out there. And I just read the comment about research? Goodness. Really?
True – it was from Julie – she’s on my FB. Sorry it’s so cold over there. Keep well, thanks for popping in the Shed.