Timer

by Tony Harrison

Gold survives the fire that’s hot enough
to make you ashes in a standard urn.
An envelope of course official buff
contains your wedding ring that wouldn’t burn.
 
Dad told me I’d to tell at St. James’s
the ring should go in the incinerator.
That “eternity” inscribed with both their names is
his surety that they’d be together, “later”.
 
I signed for the parcelled clothing as the son,
the cardy, apron, pants, bra, dress-
 
The clerk phoned down, 6- 8- 8- 3- 1?
Has she still her ring on? (Slight pause) Yes!
 
It’s on my warm palm now, your burnished ring!
 
I feel your ashes, head, arms, breasts, womb, legs,
sift through its circle slowly, like that thing
you used to let me watch to time the eggs.

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 more than 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.

More about the Poetry Society…

Tweets @PoetrySociety

"Pretty ain't it..." Glorious show of school poetry books by @felthamgirl. Fewer school anthologies used now than in the 80's, but at least they now feature women, theguardian.com/books/2019/jan… Retweeted by The Poetry Society

I've got 1 London face-to-face poetry surgery available @PoetrySociety Cafe on Fri 1 Feb, 3.30 for an hour's feedback on your poetry. Who would like it? poetrysociety.org.uk/event/katrina-… Retweeted by The Poetry Society

@PoetrySociety and @no1_emily got me to do a poetry mixtape which was so much fun to do! twitter.com/poetrysociety/… Retweeted by The Poetry Society

#snowwatch Snow falling and night falling fast, oh, fast In a field I looked into going past, And the ground almost covered smooth in snow, But a few weeds and stubble showing last. Source: familyfriendpoems.com/poem/desert-pl…

test Twitter Media - #snowwatch

Snow falling and night falling fast, oh, fast
In a field I looked into going past,
And the ground almost covered smooth in snow,
But a few weeds and stubble showing last.

Source: https://t.co/E9lbXzS3wy https://t.co/c9TLX1nrQA

Illustrator @manshenlo graces the world of animation with her quietly-powerful characters > buff.ly/2RIP0KY Retweeted by The Poetry Society

Offering access to the extensive archives of seven acclaimed titles including @PNReview, @poetrywales and The Poetry Review (published by @PoetrySociety), the Poetry Collection is an invaluable resource for literary enthusiasts bit.ly/2ICUoG7 ✒️ Retweeted by The Poetry Society

Two months until #NationalPoetryCompetition winners are announced! In anticipation, join us for a night of poetry from 2017 commended poets Joseph Butler, @janieslavin , and judge @hannahlowepoet at London’s Poetry Café, 6 Feb at 7:30! Book your tickets: bit.ly/npccafe

This is the kind of graph we DO like to see!

test Twitter Media - This is the kind of graph we DO like to see! https://t.co/my856rkiCT

The Night Alphabet is a new short story collection by @JTaylorTrash - she will be reading from the collection at the @PoetrySociety Poetry Cafe on the 30th Jan, joined by @UnchainedP, Sarah Crutwell and Ansori Sad Howidi. More info here: ow.ly/uwHb30noEJk Retweeted by The Poetry Society

🎚️🎚️New Poetry Mixtape 🌠 @DzifaBenson gives us her top poetry picks including @luckyflowerhowe // Anne Carson // @warsan_shire // Terrance Hayes // @DBtodomundo and more: poetrysociety.org.uk/publications-s…

test Twitter Media - 🎚️🎚️New Poetry Mixtape 🌠 @DzifaBenson gives us her top poetry picks including @luckyflowerhowe // Anne Carson // @warsan_shire // Terrance Hayes // @DBtodomundo and more: https://t.co/2xtWKJfcNV https://t.co/AzVyfqEzpc