Longlisted Poem 2013

Cecilia Wray

Elizabeth Woodville School, Milton Keynes, Northamptonshire

Recipe for disguise

That white, silken collar that was always askew,
when worn with his other face looked brand new…
I had never seen him smile before
And then when I did my faithful soul tore
For it was a half-smile, so tiny but proud
Like a piece of moon naked by a slit in the cloud
His eyes glistened as they usually did
But they did so with hunger like he wanted me rid
He buttered some toast and delighted at the crunch
And turned to face me; a brunch before lunch.
Marmalade next; a symbol for the flame of his crime
The jelly bitter sweetness of old orange rind
It was a usual breakfast but an unusual day
As the emotions of a changed beast festered away
Out from his cap two coarse, brown ears jumped
I had always assumed they were glandular lumps
There were oyster shells empty on the edge of the rack
Salty, grey meat of another preliminary snack
Along with his doddering, pottering walk
The collar looked just right; an appendage of sorts
sweet and forgetful
or a past quite dreadful?
His nose in the shadows was unusually long
and wet at its tip, out like a slug it shone.
When he turned to me covered in breadcrumbs and pith
And yelled, ‘All the better to eat you with!’
I wept as he whipped off his crony disguise
took hold of his oyster fork with vehement despise
We grappled around and his wolf breath was close
I took his murderous medicine and gave him a dose
The stab was fatal and he bled on his fur
Like the stickiness of resin from a tree to the air
When asked by the judge why I couldn’t predict
That my grandpa was a wolf playing a trick
I just hadn’t noticed the details:
That taste for bitterness, those ears, nose, his tail.
© Cecilia Wray

Project Details

  • Date January 2, 2015
  • Tags 2013 The Details - Longlisted Poems