Photo by Julia Kadel / Unsplash

(after 'Fancy Dress' by Caroline Bird)

a little bird once said that we write poetry

because we have a desperate need to confess

but also the ability to hide things in our words

true, the game is making metaphor matryoshka

some spicy little shells to undo and unwrap

funny, clever, scary, posh, sporty, ginger, baby

until you have a pile of empty layers around you

all this peeling performing a classic misdirection

from the core-us girl at the end who doesn't open

Caroline Bird has said this in lots of different ways, including of course in her poem 'Fancy Dress' from The Air Year, but this explanation in this introduction to her 'selected poems' collection Rookie is particularly lovely...

My favourite Caroline Bird poems are: 'Anaesthetic', 'Drawn Onward' and 'Loveborough' from The Air Year; 'Patient Intake Questionnaire', 'Eye Contact' and 'To Be Explicit' from In These Days of Prohibition, and 'The Dry Well', 'This Was All About Me' and 'Corine' from The Hat-Stand Union.

To see 'Anasthetic', go to 7m 15s in...