MAG Poetry Competition 2010 – Shortlisted Poem

Becoming Whole

by Shona Albouy

Your back barred the door
which banged behind you;
Bolt dropped -
you were gone.

Turning inside
myself
inside this room
which welcomes me whole
no longer filled by you.

Solitude
before the fire
I hog the whole heat
and linger on a half-finished novel;
half my time having been yours.

Your empty chair
gapes
open-mouthed
with surprise.

Added: 03.04.2010

Judges' comments on this poem

06.05.2010

Although short, the poem speaks volumes about the relationship of the couple.

07.05.2010

One of my favourites. In so few words, it created a real sense of the effects of the person's absence, and had some great imagery.

25.05.2010

The third and fourth stanzas are really strong, powerful but simple and evocative. Is there more you can say in the second stanza?

31.05.2010

Love alliteration of 1st stanza and image of chair in the last. Great feel for sounds and rhythmn of language.

08.06.2010

Whole of title and halves presented though the poem works well. Final image of chair personified and reflecting on narrator is wonderful.

15.06.2010

Good to see this poem still in the final 12. Well done.

17.06.2010

I like the personification of the chair - good closure.

22.06.2010

Just encapsulates the (non) relationship of the couple.

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