A poem by William Thompson

i. GRAVEL PIT

A subdued thump as he opens the boot.

The car’s suspension sags. A slalom

of mud-stiff laces. As we set off, I listen

to the square maraca of the tackle box.

Our rods, part javelin, part curtain-rail,

shiver in lockstep with our path up to the swim.

And then I’m ten years old, watching

as he threads a needle through the sleek,

tense chain-mail of a frozen roach.

But now I start to understand why this

must be a skill he’s always wished we’d shared,

as his finger lets go of the see-through line

and float, bait and hook are airborne

in the long, languid lasso of his cast.

About the contributor

William Thompson
William Thompson is a PhD candidate in Creative Writing at the University of Bristol. His work has been published in Atrium, Lighthouse, Ink Sweat & Tears, Selcouth, The Cannon’s Mouth, Passengers and is forthcoming in The Best New British and Irish Poets 2019-2021 (Eyewear).

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