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My daughter's first eye test

My daughter’s first eye test

        Colour of moth wing,     faithful against a crush

         of darkness, pupils dilated to harvest moons,

        left eye struggling for the right, reaching

             to  peg  words  on  a  flapping   washing   line,

                 WV turned inside out, OQ made of restless

                      fuzzy felt, shapes of words humming

                      like saffron fireflies
                        flitting far
                          away

Olga Dermott-Bond

Editor's note: Olga's poem was laid out ingeniously in its original form,
with nine different font sizes, each line smaller than the one before.
It's impossible to reproduce this exactly on this web page, but I've done my best!

Olga Dermott-Bond

About this poem

Every year, Poetry on Loan runs a poetry competition for people who live, work or study in the West Midlands. This year's theme was Vision, and the winner of the adult category was this poem - My daughter's first eye test, by Olga Dermott-Bond.

Olga is originally from Northern Ireland and read English at the University of St. Andrews. Her debut poetry pamphlet "apple, fallen" is published by Against the Grain Press. A former Warwick Poet Laureate, she has had poetry and flash fiction published in a range of magazines including Rattle Magazine, Dodging the Rain, Magma, Strix, Cordite Review, Under the Radar, Ink Sweat and Tears, The Interpreter’s House and Paper Swans. She was the winner of BBC Proms poetry competition 2019 and is a commissioned artist for Coventry City of Culture 2021. Olga was selected as one of the emerging poets for Bedtime Stories of the End of the world. She is an Assistant Head in a secondary school in Warwickshire and has two daughters. @olgadermott