******Shortlisted in the 2020 Saboteur Awards – Best Poetry Pamphlet*******
The Ghost Hospital is the eagerly anticipated new book from acclaimed poet, Pauline Rowe. Featuring seventeen new poems which were mainly written during Pauline’s research for her PHD, The Ghost Hospital deals with themes of love, loss, legacy and illness before delving into the unanswerable questions of our own immortality.
Described by Deryn Rees-Jones as a ‘remarkable book’ – we’re slightly biased but have to agree.
36 pages ISBN 978-1-9160381-7-2
What the people say:
Pauline Rowe’s Ghost Hospital is a remarkable book! – Deryn Rees-Jones
watching ‘R.D.Laing Has No Face’ on YouTube
You look like a fine,
or mime artist.
Do you follow the news
in the dark or shadow land –
can you hear us think about you?
When we read your books
are you released
from some small agony?
Like a plenary indulgence?
I watch your face become
your mother’s face
– what you remembered
as your mother’s face
how you try to emulate
her mask of sorrow,
in your own features
the expression that flooded
her cruel face, one rare day –
when your father brought home
a birthday gift, a small box
within a larger box;
anticipation deliberately engineered
for his pleasure,
fragments of him,
ten cut toe-nails
from his hard, dirty feet.
I bequeath him my skull
(inside which he leads another life),
my hip bones, the roots of my teeth, my scars,
the ones tight with secrets like lieder,
the ones that ache when it rains.
I go back in dreams to that cold kitchen,
stirring porridge on a 2-ring stove.
I didn’t see the devil that winter
nor dress even the smallest tree.
I forgot the accommodations of ribbons
though there was frost enough for two.
It replays itself, his head to one side,
playful, keeping his word, so real
I can taste his breath.
My desire then was a pearl –
perfect, no start, no end, no memory of grit.