My Heart After Chernobyl

Louise Mather

Instead of tearing down a tree,
I unravel amnesia into shapes –

I am always finding feathers,
these old leaves were once moths

here, hold out your palms –
nobody mentions acid in the rain anymore,

its invisibility fallen into our bodies’ decay,
gift of heart, uncovered, ancient dust

unpoisoned, a dream,
we spoke about it once,

how a bird takes flight,
lilacs beneath the willow.

Louise Mather is a writer from Northern England and founding editor of Acropolis Journal. Her debut pamphlet ‘The Dredging of Rituals’ is out with Alien Buddha Press, 2021. She writes about ancestry, rituals, endometriosis, fatigue and mental health. Twitter (@lm2020uk).