• Ollie Horsfall


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She stopped eating.

Washing dishes

Wringing hands

Over and over

Her skin

Red and sore.

Soft hands

Cupping my face

To say I love you.

I’d say it back.

And smile.

Hands dry

All that soap.

The dirt clung to her nails.

A plate of potatoes and meat.


Chew and chew

Hot tap;

Gently place a pan in

Scalding water;

Follow with dry, red hands;


The same hands

placing a ring

on my finger.

The kitchen


No daffodils now

Sunlight: hollow.

All the colours,

all the happiness,

drifting away;

some odd circumstance.

I came home.

I smelt her food.


I walked into the kitchen.

She was slumped…

In my place.

Alarm beeping.

Smoke from the oven.

We weren’t breathing anyway.

Her hands: red and sore.

Tears in her eyes,

To tell me she was pregnant

The tears had dried now.

Bottle of pills: empty

Picture of our baby, in the other.

The kitchen: empty.

The coffin: on its way.

I dressed her; a bright yellow dress,

I placed a picture; last thing

held with any meaning

in her hands; fastened together.

Her name was Emma.


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