The tow path traces its wet heartbeat

past mud and grass, then disappears

through a keyhole of bridge and shadow.


Trees wade the ripples; boats glide

through the stillness, spilling pulsed curves.

Sun slides on the water’s tracings.


Beyond the bridge, brambled secrets

and more ghosts that the water

won’t keep for long, having no memory.


Ada thinks of Babcia and what it must be

to live with no past, just a flickering now

traced in fragments on an unstill surface.


Even the things she’d will to forget

are part of her heart’s pulse.


S.A. Leavesley (From ‘Lampshades & Glass Rivers’, Loughborough University Lamplight Press, 2016, winner of the Overton Poetry Prize 2015.)