This poem was written by my friend and seriously talented poet Amanda Needham. Her work resonates with myth and magic shot through with the visceral and bloody. Emotion seethes, past, present, real and imagined churn. I would love her to publish a collection. Hope you enjoy this little insight.

Polly x

They always told me I was a harbinger.

Vikings would quake at the sight of me

with my nine-foot wingspan

and storm clouds that followed on my feathered gown.

Your name was false (King of the Oyster Thieves)

and when the sky darkened we came clean.

It was me you begged with hands full of sea grass,

to build you a shelter. Sea oak is not suitable

to bear the load of our home,

the selkies could then take us in the night,

tearing down our wall with their heavily-boned fins.

Or me, with my talons may wake

to find you a mess of blood and seaweed-

wings so sharp they may cut out your heart

and flood our house.

Do not love me, I don’t protect anything.

I only bring bad tidings

(on the tide).

I’ll just take flight and reign down

while you on your barnacle throne

can safely surface so often,

and welcome the storm.

~Amanda Needham 2017


4 thoughts on “Albatross (Alcyone) by Amanda Needham

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