Ward 5

this is the end 
a slow overture 
I am breathing in the dust of fires, bones 
I am breathing atoms like trees 
the walls are white like an art gallery 
with instillations that blip and sigh 
the air is rich like yeast 
in the other room 
someone is rising 
she drifts by in her laurel shift 


I am aware of my lungs 
my mosquito spine 
holding my knees to my chin 
as I wait 
I ask if anyone has thought of playing 
Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Mozart here 
we need to hear the heart- 
rate monitors, she tells me 
now be still 
the sensation comes like crawling 
– a thick sleeve of greenfly – 
small things decoding as roses 
her voice is round and deep 
in the hum and flicker of that room 
somewhere a persistent 
heart is pumping 


Micah Timona Ferris completed her MA at the IIML in 2011 and has a BA from University of Canterbury in English and Theatre and Film Studies. In 2010 she won the Margaret Mahy Prize at the Hagley Writers’ Institute and in 2011, the Macmillan Brown Prize for Writers. Her poetry and short fiction has been published in various NZ and international journals and she is also a performance poet. Micah was born in Switzerland and has dual New Zealand Citizenship. She currently resides in Christchurch and is temporarily relocating to the UK in 2012.