Poetry Shelf noticeboard: Lily Holloway’s ‘Tidewrack’


Everything is beached in the apocalypse

bathed in eggplant light as I trundle

past lines of tidewrack and lemons

spitting with sandhoppers

Pink cephalopods suck armoured worms 

from where holes bubble and froth

muscle pulled thick and stubborn

I can hear their beaks cracking

tentacles grasping and it’s painful

to see through their pellucid skin

When I look again, now closer to that line of debris

fluorescent seaweed are strands of thin balloons 

blues and yellows simply twisted and segmented

overlapping scuttlers 

a carrier crab with an urchin settled on its carapace

an offering or mardi-gras hat

People have written cryptograms with sticks

just under the surface of the water

tic-tac-toe and boxes made of scallop shell

preserved in the stillness of it all

The sand path around the cliffside grows thin

and I walk like there’s less gravity 

in a jacket that rustles and clinks

pockets full of the clarity I’m bootlegging

Lily Holloway

Lily Holloway (she/they) has been published in StarlingScumThe Pantograph Punch, Landfall and other various nooks and crannies (see a full list at lilyholloway.co.nz/cv).  She is an executive editor of Interesting Journal and has a chapbook forthcoming in AUP New Poets 8. Lily is based in Tāmaki Makaurau, is a hopeless romantic and probably wants to be your penpal! You can follow her on Twitter @milfs4minecraft.

2 thoughts on “Poetry Shelf noticeboard: Lily Holloway’s ‘Tidewrack’

  1. gannetnic

    This is such a dazzlingly good poem. It has the kind of sensory attention, depth and feeling I am both envious of and inspired by. Ka rawe, Lily!



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