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Anni Wilton-Jones – Confined to Quarters

Wilton Jones profile Dec 2020

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Live Encounters Poetry & Writing, Volume One, December 2020.

Anni Wilton-Jones, a resident of Co Mayo, has also lived in Wales, England and Saudi Arabia. Having experienced a varied range of careers she is now retired and concentrating on her writing and her photography. A writer of poetry and, occasionally, prose, she has read in Wales, England, the USA and Ireland. Her collections include Bridges, Winter Whiting, Moth (a chapbook about abuse, written under the pen-name Victoria Tims) and Put On Your Thinking Cap (a chapbook of photographs and poems for children). She currently leads Pen & Ink, a Mayo writers group, and is one of the organisers of the SiarScéal festival, for which she has edited the 2020 anthology.

Confined to quarters

A mimicry
of starlings
crowding branches
or flying
beaks laden
worms and wasps
bees and butterflies

to fill
the ever-open
nestling throats

house martins
swooping and swirling
catching and carrying
to nests high up
under eaves

a cat
running distractedly
too much prey
too fast
too far away

a buzzing
a chattering

my acre

until now

Covid 2020

Under observation

A blasé browser
she idles along aisles
saunters round shelves
casually toting
an open bag

he observes as she
picks up products
and puts them back

as he watches
she wanders away
and departs

turning back to his task
he makes a memo
in his mind
for a caustic critique

stock so shoddy
the shoplifter shunned it

on this
his final
Secret Shopper assignment
it’s a denunciation
to die for!


In the mirror
I am distorted
down my forehead
and my nose
across my mouth
and chin

as if
I am two separate selves
which look alike
but act apart

if I close one eye
I can hide
my left-sided deeds
from my right-sided soul

but then
I can do that
without a broken mirror.

Downpatrick Head

Bent against the gale
raincoated cameras
at the ready
we are here
to record the storm

high-rising surf

waves beating
on towering cliffs
spume flying

all around
the crash
the thunder
the howl
of power unfettered

absorbing us
into its life


but ecstatic
we are aware
the photos
will be amazing

but still only
a poor reminder
of the day
we were one
with the wind.

© Anni Wilton-Jones