A winner of the Members' Poems competition in the winter issue of Poetry News, in which members were asked to write a response to a Shakespearean sonnet. The competition was judged by A.E. Stallings.

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    [ID] => 16504
    [post_author] => 6
    [post_date] => 2015-12-18 10:48:51
    [post_date_gmt] => 2015-12-18 10:48:51
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The hillside is the dog on my doorstep. The hillside is unshiftable as a sideboard – the great-grandmother’s antique I’m obliged to keep.

The hillside wears a headdress of oak, open-branched – no-one argues with life-thickened arms like those.

The hillside is serrated – nettle, dandelion, thistle, fern – a pot-luck pie of fans for hot days, games, a sting on the tongue.

The hillside is a hat – my little daughter pinned to it, an ornamental bird in her red mac. The hillside finds it funny, how I stumble and grow old.

The hillside is a patient for the surgeon of the sky. The sun leapfrogs the hillside as a drunk girl vaults a bollard.

I was that drunk girl. I told the time by dandelion, wet the bed for years, made nettle risotto just the once. I am impatient, unhill-like, can’t name the birds

beaten from its ferns. Out of spite I’ll call the hillside a field I can’t be arsed to climb – I’m the elderly gravida, hanging back to blackberry, handing her over to the custody of trees.

In response to William Shakespeare's Sonnet 12, "When I do count the clock that tells the time"

[post_title] => The Hillside [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => the-hillside [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-01-07 16:20:29 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-01-07 16:20:29 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://poems.poetrysociety.org.uk/?post_type=poems&p=16504 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => poems [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [meta_data] => stdClass Object ( [wpcf-published-in] => First published in Poetry News, Winter 2015. [wpcf-date-published] => 2015 [wpcf-summary-description] => A winner of the Members' Poems competition in the winter issue of Poetry News, in which members were asked to write a response to a Shakespearean sonnet. The competition was judged by A.E. Stallings. [wpcf-rights-information] => [wpcf-poem-award] => Members' Poems - a response to a Shakespearean sonnet [wpcf_pr_belongs] => ) [poet_data] => stdClass Object ( [ID] => 4236 [forename] => [surname] => [title] => Anna Kisby [slug] => anna-kisby [content] => Anna Kisby lives in Brighton and works as an archivist. Her poetry has been placed in competitions and published in magazines including Poetry News, Mslexia, Orbis, Seam and South Bank Poetry. She was the winner of the New Writer poetry competition 2011. ) )

The Hillside

by Anna Kisby

The hillside is the dog on my doorstep. The hillside is unshiftable
as a sideboard – the great-grandmother’s antique I’m obliged to keep.

The hillside wears a headdress of oak, open-branched – no-one argues
with life-thickened arms like those.

The hillside is serrated – nettle, dandelion, thistle, fern – a pot-luck pie
of fans for hot days, games, a sting on the tongue.

The hillside is a hat – my little daughter pinned to it, an ornamental bird
in her red mac. The hillside finds it funny, how I stumble and grow old.

The hillside is a patient for the surgeon of the sky. The sun leapfrogs
the hillside as a drunk girl vaults a bollard.

I was that drunk girl. I told the time by dandelion, wet the bed for years,
made nettle risotto just the once. I am impatient, unhill-like, can’t name the birds

beaten from its ferns. Out of spite I’ll call the hillside a field I can’t be arsed to climb –
I’m the elderly gravida, hanging back to blackberry, handing her over to the custody of trees.

In response to William Shakespeare’s Sonnet 12, “When I do count the clock that tells the time”

The Poetry Society was founded in 1909 to promote “a more general recognition and appreciation of poetry”.  Since then, it has grown into one of Britain’s most dynamic arts organisations, representing British poetry both nationally and internationally.  Today it has nearly 4000 members worldwide and publishes The Poetry Review.

With innovative education and commissioning programmes and a packed calendar of performances, readings and competitions, the Poetry Society champions poetry for all ages.

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