Let Down is a lockdown poem sprinkled with fairytale magic, ready to tell a story in verse and tell it out loud . . .
I’m currently working on a magic and myth themed poetry pamphlet, so I’m often thinking in fairytales . . . Around two weeks into lockdown, I was looking at my eldest daughter’s hair and noticing how long it had grown, when I recalled an image of Rapunzel’s hair streaming down the front of her tower. That fairytale premise had become a reality for us all, (not that we were using our untrimmed hair to admit visitors)!
I wondered how others were coping, particularly young people. When I was a teenager I used to walk everywhere (and I mean miles). I would go to a friend’s house, to the shops, to the beach, would meet up with a group, sometimes a boyfriend. . . I had so much freedom. My only enemy was heavy rain! When forced to sit at home, I would search for books I hadn’t read and sometimes write my own stories or poems.
At the start of lockdown, I couldn’t write much, but with the help of regular prompts from Poetry Ireland’s Writer in Residence, Catherine Ann Cullen, the words came back. Perhaps imagination is the new freedom.
‘Let Down’ features in the current issue of Skylight 47, which has just launched on Zoom. If you would like a copy go here, but hurry – they are selling fast!