Poem: On a Photo of a Woman Listening to the Heart of a Stranger by Simon Williams

On a Photo of a Woman Listening to the Heart of a Stranger

When I heard his heart
double-timing my own,
saw the sonar echoes
of his head, his bum,
I knew even then he was
strong through its strength:
badum-badum-badum.

When I heard his heart
from his tall, wrecked body,
skittled on the pavement,
I felt for his pulse
though my fingers shook
like a diesel truck, idling:
b a d u m b a d u m…

When I heard his heart,
a backbeat in the music
of her, it was bizarre
it sounded just the same.
I hope we can be friends,
linked by singular surgery:
badum badum badum.


Simon Williams has eight published collections, his latest being a co-authored pamphlet with Susan Taylor, The Weather House www.indigodreams.co.uk/williams-taylor/4594076848, published in 2017 by Indigo Dreams. Simon was elected The Bard of Exeter in 2013 and founded the large-format magazine, The Broadsheet.


Our JustGiving page is open for donations to the Children’s Heart Surgery Fund – no amount is too small if you feel moved to support.

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