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last update:
30 Aug22

Janet Hatherley photo
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Janet Hatherley at Dempsey & Windle
listen to poem
I’m not afraid

poetry favourites:
The British Haiku Society

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collection –
“What Rita Tells Me”,
Dempsey & Windle




I’m not afraid

to sleep: I turn into it each night,
pull the billowing duvet around my limbs.
I, thirteen years old, in PE kit, took a last run,
bounced on the trampette and leap-frogged the buck.
At the very top, my strength failed.
In my dive, my fall, I felt
one moment of absolute fear and then
acceptance. It was complete and I was calm
when I hit the floor. This is how it must be
at the last breath, when we roll
in Wordsworth’s breaking waves on the constant sands,
from one life to the shores of another.
Here, I wake. Canary Wharf is a mirror of pink on the horizon
blazing into a new day.
    …have sight of that immortal sea… And hear the mighty waters rolling evermore.
    Ode: Intimations of Immortality from Recollections of Early Childhood,
    William Wordsworth

Janet Hatherley

published in Under the Radar, Issue 26, The Change Issue, Autumn 2020.
ISSN 1758-3357