There are a number of inspirations behind this new poem, ‘Black Widow’, which I decided to share especially for Halloween.  My daughters love superheroes and my eldest owns a book of Avengers stories, featuring Black Widow. I started thinking about the fact that she is the only female Avenger and remembered the questions that were asked when Scarlett Johansson first starred in an Avengers’ film, yet was not included in the run of action figures produced afterwards.

Further impetus came from reading ‘What I Learned From the Incredible Hulk’ by Aimee Nezhukumatathil.  I wouldn’t have believed such a sensitive poem could exist about the big green man, but there it is – a poem to treasure.  I decided it would be a challenge to write my own poem about a superhero and was instantly drawn to the neglected Black Widow.

As part of the writing process, I tried to imagine what it would be like to be a woman empowered by night, unafraid of its shadows.  I considered the pain of battle, as well as the scores, and chose to end the poem with the revelation that would surely give most surprise to a male opponent, but really should not, because all women have to fight to survive.

Black Widow

Halloween Poem

On thread of night
it’s easy to walk
between forms,
easy to blend;
your catsuit could
have been sewn
from the sky’s cloth.

What’s hard
are the blows
you catch, despite
the spin and block
and swing; your
hands meeting flesh,
the fire of a target.

Spy was a name
you used to own
before you became
an Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.,
wore bracelets with bite:
the real shock
a woman’s touch.

K. S. Moore

Photo by K. S. Moore – taken of an image that appears in a story called ‘No I in Team’. Details below:

Lambert, Nancy, Di Vito, Andrea, Rosenberg, Rachelle and Pantaziz, Peter. (2017) ‘No I in Team’, Marvel Avengers Minute Treasury, p. 37, Parragon Books Ltd.

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K. S. Moore is a Welsh Poet and Writer, based in Ireland. Her poetry has recently appeared in The Stinging Fly, Southword and Crannog.Online magazines: Nutshells and Nuggets, And Other Poems, and Ink Sweat and Tears have also featured poems. Meanwhile, flash fiction and short stories have been published in FlashFlood, Metazen, Number Eleven and The Bohemyth.K. S. Moore has been shortlisted for Flash Mob 2013, Blog Awards Ireland and 99 Fiction. She has performed at Waterford Writers' Weekend, Waterford Winterval and Swansea's Dylan Thomas Festival.

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