Scalpel

by Richard Moorhead
Wild Poetry Forum
Highly Commended, May 2010
Judged by Fiona Sampson


Like wire but stronger, glass – a sheet thereof
thin as grief, pushed beneath a fingernail,
or in the coppery swamp of bloody tongue.
Might snip away the flap of skin that tenses

to the jaw. How easily it glides like lies
through the merely meat of me. Apart from
doctors, who is more superior?
I wonder.
After the first shock of pain (I cannot ever

capture how everything just stops), the rooted
socket like some just wrenched tooth glows
if I worry it with broken bone. The blunt end
of a finger satisfies, the sharp end’s splinters

heat me up. Everyone, unless you fight back,
may be how I heed advice. They say they have
the sharpness of diamonds, but I will not be
satisfied with simply being told.


Very interesting ideas and images, just marred by occasional archaism (“thereof”) and clotted syntax. --Fiona Sampson

  • March 2018 Winners

    • First Place

      Cuttlefish
      by Jim Doss
      Wild Poetry Forum

      Second Place

      Wings
      by Bernard Henrie
      The Writer's Block

      Third Place

      gutterball
      by Brenda Morisse
      Wild Poetry Forum

  • February 2018 Winners

    • First Place

      Nebraska, Summer
      by Greta Bolger
      The Waters

      Second Place

      Goldback Fern
      by Bob Bradshaw
      The Writer's Block

      Third Place

      Negotiatin’ Wi Demons (For wee Rabbie Burns)
      by John J. Williamson
      PenShells