Issue 18: Denise Riley
(Tom Raworth Memorial)
Appalled, yet flexy as a marionette
remoulded far from children and from men
it tries itself before its own star chamber –
recoils in stammers. Cannot answer, she.
‘In mounds of rainy violets no aid hides’:
court of itself-condemned admits no plea
of how she tried so hard, or what the petals saw
from their quite harmless rosette of leaves.
Denise Riley's books include War in the Nursery ; ‘Am I that Name?’ ; The Words of Selves ; Denise Riley: Selected Poems ; The Force of Language, with Jean-Jacques Lecercle ; Impersonal Passion , Time Lived, Without Its Flow  and Say Something Back .