salt

Magdalena Ball

 

cloudlike piles

opaque not white

coloured yellow by chromate ions

copper blue

 

electrolyte

my finger runs along the table

picks up a trace on the tongue

 

I wanted to talk about skin instead

the salty taste of it

as animal covering

preceding the living tissue

below the protective barrier

 

basement membrane, connective tissues

all those things I needed

to give and take and give

 

without the language

it was touch and go

a brush, a sigh, a hint only

back to the grain

 

underneath the colour

the lacrimal fluid

the shading is black post black

abstracted as contrast

a window that opens onto a wall

onto a fluorescent light onto parchment

where you are, now alone

a fragment, and whole

 

just another woman

as alike as unlike

united by what we know

can’t share

and are sharing in this

public inland space

 

 

Magdalena Ball is Managing Editor of Compulsive Reader. She is the author of several novels and poetry books, most recently, High Wire Press, published in 2018 by Flying Island Press. She has shortlisted in or won a number of literary prizes including the Queensland Poetry Festival Philip Bacon Ekphrasis Award and the Newcastle Poetry Prize.

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