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Sadie Maskery



the poet

Sadie Maskery lives in Scotland by the sea. She's had her poetry published in numerous journals – among them, Fevers of the Mind, The Selkie, Green Ink Poetry, Crow and Cross Keys, Lothlorien Poetry Journal and Burnt Breakfast Magazine. Her chapbook Push was published by Erbacce Press, while her debut collection, Shouting at Crows was published in 2022 by Alien Buddha Press.

the poems


00:00 / 02:42

                       The first time we meet the shock
                       is there but small, a pause
                       in the celestial clock;
                       a tick of time suspended,
                       potentiality acknowledged.
                       My heart refinds its
                       beat. Life moves on.
                       In quiet moments
                       I find myself replaying
                       the curve of shadows
                       under your eyes
                       and I wonder at your weariness.
                       Another day, a touch of fingers
                       on my shoulder
                       and the heat flows, how can
                       you caress so intimately?
                       I walk away yet feel you
                       across the room.
                       When our eyes meet I know
                       from the way our cheeks flush,
                       we are magnets, an exquisite tug
                       dilating pupils, veins, souls,
                       it is more than imaginary,
                       this pain, this want.
                       We meet by chance, friends
                       of a friend, and I want to say,
                       if you were to take my hand
                       right now, lead me to an empty room,
                       press your leg between my thighs
                       as I pull your face towards me,
                       the wall cold against my back
                       and the warmth of you so
                       overwhelming I almost faint from
                       hunger quenched, ferocity and
                       joy, terror and delight, your tongue
                       in my mouth, my fingers
                       entangled in your hair,
                       your hands caressing beneath
                       the black soft cotton, belly, breast,
                       my sighs, your breath gasping,
                       diffident explorer, urgent devourer
                       and all this Oh my God
                       my dear did you not know?
                       if you were to take my hand
                       it would be beyond words,
                       beautiful, defiled in ecstacy ...
                       and inevitable – it has happened – it –
                       will – happen – remember –
                       the universe played this moment
                       to infinity before we were born
                       but yes, hi, no I don't think we've
                       actually been introduced, although
                       we've met. We've met. We've met.

A Nice Cup of Tea

00:00 / 01:02

                       I knew he had died
                       Because every day he woke first
                       To bring a nice cup of tea in bed.
                       And that morning the kettle
                       Didn't wake me and he lay
                       Still beside me.
                       I eased into my slippers
                       Padded to the kitchen.
                       Made two teas, put them on tray.
                       The nice cups, with saucers,
                       Fine china that needed a wash
                       Because of the dust, for show
                       Usually, we could see our hands
                       Through the glaze. Nice cups.
                       With fresh milk, not yesterday's.
                       Watched the kettle boil.
                       The steam curled

                       Across the worktop
                       And disappeared. Where does it go
                       I wondered. The sugar shook
                       From the spoon a little.

                       A nice cup of tea.


00:00 / 01:47

                       When we were young we played
                       at the beach on a blustery day.
                       The waves snapped against our legs.
                       We bellysurfed through spume,
                       not knowing if the wet on our cheeks
                       was foam or rain or tears of laughter.
                       Then you were tumbled by breakers
                       against the groyne, the length of it,
                       up with the wave and then sucked
                       back by its retreat, and I still laughed
                       because you were a rag doll flailing,
                       sand and weed in your hair, mouth wide.
                       You crawled back to me, stood,
                       and from every inch of you blood
                       welled, a thousand striations
                       of intricate symmetry,
                       delicate etchings,
                       red rubies,
                       on skin
                       with the salt water
                       but shock
                       kept you numb,
                       at first.
                       I don't remember
                       how you reached hospital, maybe
                       someone from the pier phoned.
                       I was confused, you went away,
                       your parents came
                       with white-edged lips and no words.
                       I never saw you again.
                       You were safer away from me
                       and the sea.
                       I went to the beach that winter
                       to watch waves surge and ebb.
                       There was no newly realised

                       aura of doom.

                       I ran fingertips along my body at night,
                       wondered if your scars were raised
                       or flat, if they held in their patterns
                       the beauty of those first beads
                       of blood through the pale,
                       that surprise,
                       and the wonder in your eyes.

Publishing credits

Beginnings: Push (Erbacce Press)

A Nice Cup of Tea: Anser Journal (Dec 2020)

Ruth: exclusive first publication by iamb


S h a r e

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