New for Headcase, by our Poet In Virtual Residence, Brian Bilston

she folded her hurt in half


she folded

her hurt

in half



it up

in tissue paper


placed it


inside a box


tied up

the box

with ribbons



a series of

sturdy padlocks



locking it

in an iron safe


which she then

carried out

to her car


to drive it

120 miles

to the shore



she hired

a boat


to take

her cargo

to a land



an unimaginably

vast desert


where she dug

a hole

twenty metres deep


in which

she buried

it all


and then built

on top

a house, a palace,


the streets of a city

which shimmered

in that desert sun


and when

she got home

she found her hurt was still there,


folded in half,

wrapped up in tissue,

and she supposed


the box

must have had

a hole in it.



Liz Fraser