Friday Poem – ‘Newborn’, Graham Clifford

Our Friday Poem this week is ‘Newborn’ from The Hitting Game by Graham Clifford.

The Hitting Game, Graham Clifford

‘Newborn’ is a disarmingly intimate poem which tenderly describes the ‘unfurling’ of a precious new life,  the minute changes in her being, and her otherwordly fragility.
The Hitting Game is Graham Clifford’s debut collection, ‘inventive and grounded, witty and vulnerable’ (Michael Laskey). There is a gentleness and empathy, humour and pathos, with poems full of unexpected dramas and fresh enxhantments which provoke as well as delight.




She nearly isn’t here. So soft
I have to watch to know
I’ve touched this pink steam
somehow holding her shape.

Dimmer switch screwed almost shut
we are stock-still
nocturnal desert-mammals, saucer-eyed,
cramping in thunder-struck poses.
Her spider-leg eyelashes
rest on a web that has us while she dreams
the leaf-edge of her country.

Unfurling by millimetres in spiked air,
anemone fingers splay then clench
as she tunes herself in,
becomes herself minutely, frost
fringing the shore of the cleanest puddle.


The Hitting Game is available from the Seren website: £9.99
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