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 Promoting Poetry in Scotland

Perhaps

if they were

cleaned

they

would appeal

to a collector,

these vessels,

slim

as Cycladic

dolls,

tar-spangled,

vaguely familiar,

some a little

more pneumatic,

all precious

because we

have no

plastic.

winners: 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009

                    A spring tide,

          pigged on wrack, has strewed

its picnic,

          hard-sucked

                    orange bleach flasks,

peppermint

          cream-cleaners, abraded

                    lemon grime-

removers, red bitten

          teats of sports drinks,

                              suntan lotions,

                    weather beaten

          toilet ducks

                    along the beach.

Wed need

the old

capacious

baskets

folk called creels,

sturdy and curved

as clamshells

to gather

in the spill.

But we have only

swimming bags

weve woven from

flag iris leaves.

And then we see

the whale.

Long After the Ban | kate miller

Kate Miller was born in Plymouth and educated at King’s College, Cambridge and Central St Martin’s in Fine Art and Art History. In 2005 she received the Peters Fraser Dunlop bursary to study for her MA in Poetry at Royal Holloway College and is now a doctoral student at Goldsmiths. Her poetry has been published in Bedford Square 2 (John Murray, 2007), London Magazine, The Shop and Poetry Wales.