Issue 7 – Winter 2004 – Zoë Skoulding

Zoë Skoulding



He stretched out his hand as doubt
crumbled in the broken surface; 
he left his fingerprints on God

as some kind of evidence if any 
were needed. For days they’d hidden 
in their skins, the doors locked

and the outer becoming inner, eyes 
in place of an eye, a hand
in place of a hand, a foot in place

of a foot, till an eye in his palm 
broke as if through glass, the surface 
molecules slipping like sand.

He dipped his hand in waves 
breaking, splintered by the spires 
of palaces he built to be believed,

not seen. In every room a door,
his body passing through as if 
a fingerprint could make it real.




as time shrinks you hold me 
till my shoulder’s
wrenched out of

true migration on a pattern 
of light the horizon uncertain
but staying still more so

direction pulses in the bone, 
wind shirrs the surface 
under skin and feathers

the places farther 
apart the necessity of going
from here to there magnetic

fields shimmer the days 
shorter the pattern of chemical 
change shades the sky



Zoë Skoulding’s most recent collection is The Mirror Trade (Seren 2004). She is currently teaching creative writing at the University of Wales, Bangor, where she is completing her PhD.