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 Standard Mortality Poem


Considered to be the underworld, cave systems,
for example in Oparara, nullify all things
acknowledged as familiar. To wit light, air currents,
perforations between body/world, any sound
and its progeny. Un-ness with flesh
and boots on, sister. Now there’s a god for ya.
Not new, no, but knowledge about whales
isn’t getting swallowed by one.
So that is where baby is going
as every party gets well and truly over.
All imagined under the great green banner
is shruggable angora and what makes baby cling
so tightly to the brightening fabric of life

Standard Birth Poem

This ritual is for anxiety
before the Thursday when
a single word is heard in the billion crashing of the sea.
So that is where baby has come from
should we ever really get down to it.
Meaning: baby is not her mother
and what diminishes one
eventually returns
unrecognisable and impossible to love the same
and everyone is someone’s small sweet babe.

Cat WOODWARD is a feminist lyric poet and lecturer in Creative Writing at The University of Cumbria. Her first collection, Sphinx was published by Salò in 2017; her second—Blood. Flower. Joy!— is due from Knives, Forks and Spoons Press. In 2018 she won the Ivan Juritz Prize for new creative modernist works.


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Partner to a press called Tenement, Hotel is a publications series for new approaches to fiction, non fiction & poetry & features work from established & emerging talent. Hotel provides the space for experimental reflection on literature’s status as art & cultural mediator. 

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