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Today I wake to
a crest of your
orange pink
leaves and
find autumn
where once
‘you’ were

Someone says
‘keep busy’
Someone belts
out an absolute
of truth that
are old props
and ‘things can
only be looked
at too closely’

Take, for example,
this body on this
morning blue
some would say
breathless some
might say if it
were not still

And most of all Anna
I fear your fear of
waking one morning
to this morning to a
textured thing one
cannot clasp between
finger and thumb like
your voice its feeling
things that cannot un-
happen like a woman
or an island of which
you are both


I think only of you on this damp, unlikely
morning (there is an air strike, there is an
announcement, there are hearts broken,
there are limps transplanted) or rather of your
hard cool stare in La Notte that looks back
at no one but is our screen through which we
flounder for sympathy glimpsing your reflection
in Monica Vitti’s three-way-looking glass as
she scrambles across a marble living chess
set of a life of her own invention for what
else was there and how when you walk past
the rockets (how many rockets had you seen
in your love before, thousands, you say, none
you say) a masterpiece of indifference and so
you keep on walking knowing that your
world is better than no one’s and to turn
round, to pause and to admire that which we
recently built would be to risk not short of


Outside it all grows stronger the liquor lacking
up the pan shot into the still of your cap-cropped
dress across which we hear the unspent foliage of
women hammering into walls into the next room

And so you appeal to too much stock to the blaze
and furnace of our autumn hearts spent in black-
and-white throes where fury is a kind of mutual
investment on bulking shores

And so we take leave of the trees while they still
stand where the untoppled balloons soar over roads
that lead into a sandpiper of a moon under which
the children still play and a man goes on reading a
paper of news and where someone is about to cut
our last patch of green

Jess Cotton is a writer living in London.
She writes mostly about poetry.  

Cotton’s poetry appears in Hotel #1.

Submissions     ︎      ︎

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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