Joel Scarfe, “Hiding a Line”

orange line

Hiding a Line

I’m hiding a line in a poem,
a line about the hour’s careful benediction,
the rain’s soft benevolent voice bouncing between the houses.

The beef is taking care of itself slowly on the stove
while I hide a line about the garlic stigma of my fingers,
the way it announces itself each time I lift the wine.

And I know the night that wants my death
is falling through the universe, brimming with its grief,
engorged with the ordinariness of grief,

but I’m hiding a line in a poem,
hiding, like some simple animal about to leap
effortlessly out of reach.


Joel Scarfe’s poems have been featured in Ambit, Rialto, Times Literary Supplement, London Magazine, and many other UK-based publications. He lives with the artist Rebecca Edelmann and their two children.



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