83 Shirley, Hampshire by Richard Stillman


Richard Stillman is Head of English at Winchester College. His poetry has appeared on the Poetry Society blog, and has been published in anthologies and online. He is represented by Peters, Fraser and Dunlop, although as he has not yet written a published novel, he is unsure why. A trustee of the Winchester Poetry Festival, he is interested in promoting local poetry and literature.







83 Shirley, Hampshire





The house has weathered, yet more dilapidated

than when we sold it last year:

grey plates of plaster falling off the walls

in patches as big as breastplates;

underneath, the wattle and daub,

the sour yellow of sand and straw.

Yet, we miss the perennial cold and damp,

held off by the fire, our jokes, her laughter.


The lead skies sodden down,

hunkering to the low horizon.

The last leavings of light

is a pale prayer of pinks, purples.

A brook ripples brown underneath

a moss-soaked stone bridge.

I lay down on the heavy earth,

and am mocked by a hilarity of hail,

that makes me spit out, makes me spit out all.


Richard Stillman