The Friday poem: ‘The late news’ by Michael Harlow

New verse by Jungian therapist and writer Michael Harlow.


The late news


This little boy

with his new number-one

haircut, his heart full of surprise,

clutching his end-of-the-year report card

to his chest, crossing High Street

for the last time—without looking

both ways


His black and white dog,

her snappy tail on fast forward

waiting for him, ears pricked,

on the other side, the cars

streaming by


Mother at the upstairs

open window, ironing

the family clothes, humming

a familiar tune for company,

just before raising her head

to look down into the street

of the dead


Later, on the late news

someone, a bystander looking

for some lost words—that kid

he said. Not a chance.

You know today is the longest

day of the year, and it’s

going to last forever

From Nothing For It But to Sing (Otago University Press, $25) by Michael Harlow

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