Author Feature - February 2021

Kate Wilson has been writing poetry since she was an angsty teenager. Now she is a marginally less angsty adult, working for charity in London. 


Her debut poetry pamphlet, One Night in January has just been published by Wild Pressed Books. The pamphlet evokes the bite of that month in the breath of a hare and the white blankness of the winter air. Cold hands that have clasped each other and let go, kisses under a starry night, a pose for a photograph in front of Mount Esja: a visceral loss permeates this collection.  

Recently Kate’s work has appeared in Eye Flash Poetry Journal, Mookychick14 MagazinePorridge Magazine and The Pandemic Poetry Anthology (Gloucester Poets). 

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January beds in like a sea mist 

calling fields to clamour, tight 

fisted in its rule. Land responds,

pales in brief daylight hours.


Through the murk of winter,

a church stands, sanctuary

for lost souls, or directionless

walkers, strays who wend off


track, despite nights spent 

penciling plans in notebooks,

laying out routes like there 

is such a thing as certainty. 


This is where they spread 

her ashes, in dusky handfuls 

on burnished ground, which 

shines with a morning frost


a hardened sparkle in fragile 

sun, beside this persistent 

steeple, blue glass windows 

guiding strangers to solace.


Picture this: two crows touch beak tips 

an accidental kiss

sending shakes, little quakes 

           cross     continents

the unlikelihood of contact

an ideal tap

                  faint knock 

                                   inaudibly tender


unfaltering sun blinkers 

like a camera filter, deceives 

takes the eye of the beholder 

adds a tiny tint of rose 

and shows us this: two crows whose 


beak tips cross paths in blind morning

but don't                              touch

it's a trick of the light

a sleight of hand in silhouette 


like how I felt when you took me to bed

how very


                               it all is.


I never thought I'd be kissed, 

though I dreamed of it 

all through cradle nights, 

sugared summers when I stretched 

my charmed wings on pages 

pretending I understood love.


Lessons were hard to come by

for a too-thin too-bespectacled

altogether awkward girl 

who freckled and reddened 

bony, wispy, 

who moved gingerly.


So when a golden boy

spoke English in a Dutch accent

pushed me into the swimming pool 

smile a shining promise

of adolescent mischief, 

I was afraid more than anything, 


and when he came by 

the campsite to call on me 

in July's infant night, grinning 

from ear to ear, tanned and tousled, 

taking my pale hand in his,

I wasn't sure where to look. 


When he placed his lips on mine

soft and wet like peaches

or his untrained tongue 

I couldn't close my eyes 

like I knew 

I was supposed to.


I could only look at the 

perfect orange sky, 

hear cicadas telling time; 

a brush of desirous legs

in a hush of tangled summer flowers

where we lay crowned heads.


After we enacted our passion,

darkness edging in 

like the smoulder inside us, 

I was sad more than anything, 

I knew I'd never be kissed

like this again.