Entry - MAG Poetry Prize 2011

Number 18

by Annie Hicks

Twenty four packets of sweating sausages
Sit in a fridge which is not switched on.
Fifteen blocks of butter keep the company
Of the sudating sausages.
Deteriorating in their own juices,
Promising exotic concoctions such as the
Zoonotic Salmonella – a dish to die for.
Years of memories and neglect
Are bedmates to filthy sheets
And dust is collecting as if a commodity.
Wooly air looms, locked in rooms,
Which have held their breath
Ever since the hiccups began.
Dreams, trapped in polaroid and
Coffined in frames, project a
Kaleidoscopic fervor which wraps itself
Around my head and then is sucked back,
Into the vacuum of the chromogenic remains
Of the past – no colour lives here now.
‘I can’t find your pyjamas Mr Poulton’
‘They’re in the second draw…in my bedroom.’ he replies.
And sure enough, there they sit, on ceremony,
Neatly folded by the now absent Mary,
And never needed as there was no one left
To dress or undress for. 

Added: 07.01.2011

Judges' comments on this poem


I really like this, very evocative and a bit squirmy!


This poem begins very well (with the descriptions of decay) and ends well with the signalling of absence. There is some overwriting, however


Great first line! Really good words in this, great sounds. Emotional ending creates a nice contrast with clinical beginning.


Really sad, great imagery too. Really liked the last three lines, ended it effectively.