by Rachel Carney

in blocks of consonants   your language stands

between us   as you translate each breath                    

for my shallow English ears   aching in the

gaps   thin pauses   as you hesitate to speak

the truth      Imagine if I could converse with you

in the language of your birth   my sentences

rolling along with yours   a waltz of our words    

Imagine      if hiraeth was mine too

if our tongues could join hands and dance off

into those West Welsh hills   flinging our ancestry behind us


ironic then   that you claim rugby   but not

poetry   as your own   your land of legends

of myth and metamorphosis   of singing

syllables   is mine alone


The Last Day

by Rachel Carney

So, here we are again,

high up, sitting on a slab

of weathered rock


at the top of Constitution Hill,

staring out to sea as if we’ve

never seen the sea before.


Gulls glide overhead,

relishing the updraft,

as we stretch out,


lean back on bare grass,

and wonder if we might

one day come back,


perhaps with kids,

and husbands too. Perhaps

not. It is the last day,


and we won’t move until

the last rays fade like warm

breath into blue,


leaving a fresh breeze

fingering our skin, as

memories pull us


down to town, and live on

like holidays, like phantom fun,

like strawberry ice-cream.

Rachel Carney has had poems published in several magazines and journals including Ink Sweat and Tears, The New Welsh Review, and Acumen. One of her poems was shortlisted for the 2019 Bridport Prize. She has also written articles and reviews for magazines and websites including Wales Arts Review and The Poetry School, is currently completing a PhD in Creative and Critical Writing, and regularly reviews books and events on her blog -

Images by Gettys Images.