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9am Outsideleft's Big National Poetry Day: Deborah Alma Deborah Alma - Mother of Pearl

9am Outsideleft's Big National Poetry Day: Deborah Alma

Deborah Alma - Mother of Pearl

by LamontPaul, Founder & Publisher
first published: October, 2021

approximate reading time: minutes

Deborah Alma - Mother of Pearl


In the stairwell of the abandoned button factory,
buttons are spilled; tumble across the metal steps
where they left in some haste.

Workers have left gloves on a cutting machine,
prim little cuffs dainty, unfinished by pearl buttons,
sly on the cutter’s steel teeth of the strongest tungsten carbide,
shells and button blanks ready.

Ghosts of the future, little ghost children of the future
they button up their knitted warm wool coats,
step out into the early Spring sunshine.

Ghosts of the future, little ghost children of the future-
buttoned up pyjamas soft and sweet, their Johnson’s Baby
hair combed before bedtime.

Ghosts of the future, little ghost children of the future
buttoned up mouths, little slits of pearl white teeth.

By Deborah Alma


Something you should know:
Deborah Alma is a UK poet, editor and teacher. She has worked using poetry with people with dementia, in hospice care, with vulnerable women’s groups and with children in schools. From 2012 she was the Emergency Poet offering poetry on prescription from her vintage ambulance. She co-founded the world’s first walk-in Poetry Pharmacy in Shropshire with her partner the poet James Sheard in 2019.
A mix of the therapeutic and the theatrical, Deborah offers consultations inside the Poetry Pharmacy and prescribes poems as cures as well as dispensing poemcetamols and other poetic pills and treatments.
She is editor of Emergency Poet - an anti-stress poetry anthology, #Me Too – rallying against sexual harassment - a women’s poetry anthology, Ten Poems of Happiness and co-edited with Dr Katie Amiel These Are the Hands-Poems from the Heart of the NHS. Her first full collection Dirty Laundry is published by Nine Arches Press. Find Deborah here at her Poetry Pharmacy


Joy to Enjoy today:
12.01am: Ancient Champion - Under Pressure »»
1am: Ade Crossen - Thoughtful Choice »»
2am: Jackie Stein - The Battle of Social Media »»
3am: Dave Pitt - Spiderman Brendan »»
4am: Jimmy Andrex - Festival of Brexit »»
5am: Brendan Hawthorne - We Are Here »»
6am: Ahmed Magare - We Cannot Walk Alone »»
7am: Emma Purshouse - Mermaid on the Number 3 »»
8am: Rue Collinge - That Year »»
9am: Deborah Alma - Mother of Pearl »»
10am: Steve Pottinger - Fatima »»
11am: Jay Lewis - Betrayal 1991 »»
12pm: Hollie McNish - Honestly »»
1pm: Emma Purshouse - Five Minutes on a Midland Train »»
2pm: Rebecca Stanhope - Take Your Hands Off Me »»
3pm: Michael Pederson - Here in a Glasgow Tenement - Not Asleep, Not Awake Either »»
4pm: Glyn Phillips - Doorways »»
5pm: PixieVic - Curious Choices »»
6pm Christian Present - Poeme »»
7pm John Robinson - My Reply To You »»
8pm David Benjamin Blower - 47 »»
9pm Emma Purshouse - Feeling Low? »»
10pm Steve Pottinger - Jam today: Mrs Veronica Blake’s manifesto for a brighter future »»
11pm Jay Lewis - The Starling 1976 »»

Founder & Publisher

Publisher, Lamontpaul founded outsideleft with Alarcon in 2004 and is hanging on, saying, "I don't know how to stop this, exactly."

Lamontpaul portrait by John Kilduff painted during an episode of John's TV Show, Let's Paint TV

about LamontPaul »»



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