Victoria Field reads her poem ‘Asleep’


Hello I’m Victoria Field and I’m going
to read a poem from my 2006 collection Many Waters. The poem’s called ‘Asleep’. Asleep One day, I was sleeping in when I saw a thread begin to make its way along the wide ceiling a thin crack crawling from corner to corner, the small beginning of disaster. I was far away, lost in my dreams when plaster began to flicker down to me – the opening grew wider – still I slept – until great chunks like teeth fell to the bed, so waking me, made me look up beneath the gaping rafters – but before my thoughts could ravel, the roof took flight. I lay in my bed beneath the unforgiving sky not knowing whether to pray or cry when fate suddenly, with his sleight of hand whipped the sheet and bed from under me – the whole house too, that was once a home left me clutching just a blanket and a carrier bag my address that night, the old, cold ground no where to go, no where to hide from voices saying I brought it on myself – no point in saying there was once a house with a roof between me and faceless stars. How it happen’s hard to say. I was asleep one night and didn’t see the crack begin. I didn’t know it would grow so huge that I’d be left alone ignored, bereft of home – sleeping out and looking in.

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