A Ribbon Red
(1) The Dark Room
I wait with my strip of hope
exposed, drowning in blue.
In the light an oily tape drips red.
As the chemicals develop, truth
appears, confirming the thumb
smudge of fear.
Closed circuit follows her like prey
through the black and white forest.
the uniforms watch, radio voices hiss
“keep an eye on a woman near the fountain”
She staggers through a crowd,
strangers part like a callous sea.
A mother drags her pram away
from this orphan child of trust.
The exits open without asking,
close quickly as she walks outside.
(3) Handheld Device
The red light is on, I try to focus
so the words are clear
but everything is restless,
my face is starting to pixellate already.
Surrounded by white
in case I stretch out,
even after death a liability.
Should someone care to look
my red eyed stare is not my mistake.
Glen Wilson’s poems have appeared in The Honest Ulsterman, Foliate Oak, Iota, A New Ulster and The Interpreters House among others. In 2014 he won the Poetry Space competition and was shortlisted for the Wasafiri New Writing Prize. He is currently working on his first collection of poetry. Glen lives in Portadown, Co Armagh, with his wife Rhonda and children Sian and Cain.
This poem is previously unpublished.