Finlay’s Hours: ‘Not a Sonnet’

A chronological collection of writing during my son’s first fortnight of life, in Neonatal ICU.

Not a sonnet written during a grief contraction.
Night rules: bad can and will happen.
Quiet invites what silence proves:
Noisy, bright afternoons are a ruse

Because daylight isn’t real anymore.
You’ve seen behind the door of your worst fears
Like a contraction:
Brief periods of calm.

Blair Witch woods in the sunshine (as real as that)
Before the wave of darkness
Into which you will fall,
When you can’t not think about

What you dare not think about,
It’s the worst sonnet ever written.


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