The Blacksmith’s Daughter
Married quick silver tongue with filthy iron
feet, grew tall and hard and dirty in the forge.
Learned the latin names for cold formed
steel, gilding metal, pig iron, asbestos, ore.
Escaped the hot, dark dust of the smithy
Ran seawards, drank salt water, cooled
her scorched heels in the brimming, cobalt fishy
filled depths. Became a fast-talking fool,
a pearl fisher, a split-tail, a lover of mercurial men
who sailed hard and loose on whisky coloured waters.
Cut her guts open, stitched the carcass into a scare-gull when
she needed to float a surface decoy to fool her father.
Who’d come looking for his lost metal-made daughter
Wishing she’d follow him back, once he’d caught her.