Weed Garden

Every morning I oil up
in ribbons and mask

enacted as dance in the garden
watering can waving

a patch of weeds left to grow tall
Chickweed, Queen Anne’s Lace, Sorrel

unadorned, fed with defiance
self-seeded, leaning towards light

bite down the envy, spin and spin
until I’m too dizzy to speak

stifled to meekness, this private
performance made public

inside spent and made up
a picture of compliance

tomorrow I will wake and walk and walk
not stop until I’ve left the farm

lost my body with all its false softness
broken to sinuous fibre
too tough to digest

Magdalena Ball


Magdalena Ball is Managing Editor of Compulsive Reader. She is the author of several novels and poetry books, most recently, High Wire Press (Flying Island Press 2018). She has shortlisted in or won a number of literary prizes including the Queensland Poetry Festival Philip Bacon Ekphrasis Award and the Newcastle Poetry Prize.

© 2019