Geraldine Mills – The Animal of Her Body

P Geraldine Mills LE P&W Vol 2 2019

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Poems by Geraldine Mills

A native of Galway, Ireland Geraldine Mills is a poet and fiction writer. She has published five collections of poetry, three of short stories and a children’s novel. She has won numerous awards for her fiction and poetry, including The Hennessy New Irish Writer Award, a Katherine Kavanagh Fellowship and has been awarded two Arts Council bursaries. Her fiction and poetry are taught on Contemporary Irish Literature courses in the USA. She is a mentor with NUI and a member of Poetry Ireland Writers in Schools’ Scheme. Her most recent poetry collection, Bone Road (Arlen House) and some of her other titles are now available from

These poems were written as part of the dance project ‘Language and Limb’ directed by choreographer/dancer Patricia Glynn and performed at the Galway Dance Theatre Festival, May 2019.

The Animal of Her Body

The animal of her body slinks
along the forest floor,
scenting out the music of green,
leaves feverish with life.

She flows from the centre of the earth,
sinuous, liquid bone.
Moves to the music of what she always was,
of what she can become.

There is only this moment
of limb and leg and breath.
There is nothing else.

Feet Hold You Steady

Feet hold you steady to the earth.
A hand grasps the story,
pulls it down to live among us.
Swirls and little wisps of stars
cling to your hands.

Eyes held straight,
each step brings you closer.
The centre of all you know
held in the curve of your bones.
Feet hold you steady to the earth.

The Old Man

Looking down
you see the old man
bent over his spade,

the clutch of clay
making a perfect
nest for seed

that carries
the beginning
of its own in it

until time will push root
through the earth,
stem into light and sun.

© Geraldine Mills