ONE POEM – Louise McStravick

Photo by Erol Ahmed on Unsplash

A daughter’s guide to poaching an egg

Make the water rearrange its insides,
shift shape as it is told,
steam rise
drip drip vinegar,
sour the water to not let things stick.
Watch it fight its way to the surface.
It is not an easy process such transformation,
if not careful it can erupt, break onto skin that has already learned
this is too hot,
but does it again anyway.
Turn the heat down.
Don’t hold the egg too high or it will spread itself open,
reveal itself, some things should be left to the imagination.
Wand a whirlpool and crack it in
watch it bring itself together,
composed, despite itself.
Let the bubbles teach it how to mature,
push it to the surface,
Fully fledged
Yolk whole, unbroken,
Ready for charred bread.

In one move let the knife cut it open
watch it pour itself out,
ready for hungry tongues.


Louise McStravick is a writer, teacher, and proud Brummie. She has featured at events in London, Birmingham and Amsterdam including London Literature Festival, Beans Rhymes & life and Streetfest as well as reading her poetry on BBC Berkshire.  She has been published both on and offline and her debut chapbook is due to be released in July 2020 with Fly on the Wall Press.

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