Alexandra Strnad


I saw his mouth’s small, red hoop
open to the scent of the body
that had housed him, I held it,
that baby breath, so light 
it could not make a pappus fly 

the air from his lungs 
like magnolias, 
the street after a summer
shower, the ghost-trace 
left on furniture after a loved
one has left, 

with each breath he took
the particles of the room–
its unwashed sheets, 
domestic debris, and exhaled
a hereafter – one that this
lifer did not recognise, 
or was not ready to breathe.

Alexandra read English at Cambridge, and Creative Writing at Oxford. Her work includes the pamphlets H is for Hadeda, published by Poetry Salzburg in 2017, and Pilgrims, published by Eyewear in 2019, as well as numerous works in leading journals.  Her debut poetry collection will be published by Eyewear in 2021.