Wild Court

An international poetry journal based in the English Department of King’s College London

‘House as Tent’: a poem by Katrina Naomi

The below poem will appear in Katrina’s third collection, Wild Persistence, forthcoming from Seren this June.


    House as Tent


You walk uphill to sleep, downhill early morning –
and there’s a flush – it’s more complicated than slipping out,
squatting in the chill, the moon keeping its eye on you.
The back door hangs in the breeze, wanting to flap
like dark green nylon but lacking something. I miss the soft
bark of nesting magpies, we couldn’t know we’d pitched
beneath them. I’ll admit the bed’s comfier here, without
the cold shriek of a mummy’s zip. We were not as clean
as we might have been. I had a relationship
with fire. The pale blue box with its flue in the corner
is as nothing compared with the dry furze
gathered at the bright blue end of day, sparks
fleeing from the gorse and granite, stars watching
from their distance deciding whether to show themselves,
for there are almost no obligations on a moor.
Here, the big dipper just fits above our terrace,
it’s a surprise I looked up at all. Here are many rooms;
there, just the two – indoors and out. Here, you wrestle
with a window, I had no window there; except for that space
when the moor’s ponies and cattle stand, motionless
and you can think about the things that matter