To My God-daughter

   August 2015

I kiss my god-daughter on the forehead
and sitting underneath
the light blue of a Tory sky
tell her slowly

that not even the air we breathe—
though we might own it for
a second as it passes through
our lungs—is really ours.

I tell her to renounce possession.
In cities like our own,
the price of free movement
is always being alone.

I tell her not to do what men say,
but open to the breeze
as clouds are on a given day
become a congeries.

Above us, armies clash by night,
cloud-shaped drones
or drone-shaped clouds circling
the prow of a lifeboat.

In the lowest rung of the troposphere,
a billion invisible
droplets clump together,
darken and fall.


Will Harris is London-based writer. One of the founding editors of 13 Pages, he co-organises The Poetry Inquisition, a monthly night of poetry held to account.


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