Mourning Bracelet

I wear my sisters round my wrist.
Loop over loop their twisted
hair chafes my skin as I write
here in the kitchen late at night;
who is it clears her throat before
the clock’s strike at turn of stair,
whose the face in the copper pan?

Out of the gate for air, I run
and they’re leaping now from stone
to stone. Down the cobbled lane
I fly in Anne’s best cotton gloves,
the hob-nailed boots Emily loved.
Footsteps when there’s no-one there,
just these twists of my sisters’ hair.

Carole Bromley (First Prize Winner Brontë Society Literary Competition 2011.
Published in Brontë Studies and in A Guided Tour of the Ice House)

A poem buoyant on its own movement and invention, knowing what it’s doing but not self-absorbed’
Seamus Heaney

Carole Bromley was born in 1948 in Middlesbrough, UK

Her poems have been widely published in magazines including Poetry Review, Poetry News, The North, Magma, Mslexia, The Rialto and Smiths Knoll and she has twice been a winner in the Poetry Business Book and Pamphlet Competition. She has two pamphlets, Unscheduled Halt (2004) and Skylight (2009) and two collections, A Guided Tour of the Ice House (2011) and The Stonegate Devil (October, 2015) with Smith/Doorstop Books, Sheffield.

All photos of Carole by Michael J Oakes