Olivia McCannon



Whenever you have trouble sleeping

Find yourself a room near water

Give it white walls, an open window

Make it high on a purpled cliff

Facing an island abandoned to birds

With the sea below, gnawing and roaring

At its topnote of shimmering foil.


Have it circled by the breathing dark

Of trees, dropping leaves, whispers

Of comfort, landing lightly –

Let yourself hear that nothing matters

Now but sleep, the world is space

Your order lasix no prescription presence in it, rippling, falling

And maybe somewhere a bird will sing


And you won’t hear the end of its song.



Olivia McCannon was born on Merseyside and is based in Harlesden, London and Belleville, Paris. Her poetry collection Exactly My Own Length (Carcanet/Oxford Poets) and her translation of Balzac’s Old Man Goriot (Penguin Classics) were published in 2011.


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