‘Giving up Mirrors’ by Susan Utting

Giving Up Mirrors

Like giving up the time (take off your watch,
unplug the glowing digits, let the chiming clock
run down to silent) there will be things
that catch you out.
                                 The whole world turns
to glass and chrome, plays tricks with darkened
screens, with windows day and night, with water.
You will be tempted.
                                 Be prepared to stick at it.
Stay indoors, keep shutters shut, curtains drawn,
if there’s a glint, sew up the edges.

When all the looking glasses face their walls,
the last fixed mirror’s sheeted over, wait.
Sit still. Let dust gather, soften the focus.
One day at a time
                                 you’ll learn to look out
through eyes that have forgotten old reflected
selves, that see the world for all it is, and wonder
at its unexamined shine.

(from Fair’s Fair)
Susan Utting’s work has been included in anthologies from Poems on the Underground to Seren’s celebration of Bob Dylan, The Captain’s Tower. Following a Poetry Business Prize pamphlet, Something Small is Missing and first collection, Striptease, her latest collections from Two Rivers Press are Houses Without Walls (2006) and Fair’s Fair (2012).

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