Safety of shells (Meredith Pitt)

Verity La Heightened Talk

Bivalves diffuse force to their outer edges
while screw-shaped shells send the pressure to their outer rings
The soft creature is protected from the crushing reality
of a weapon in their classroom
Waves of pressure are dispersed around the periphery
of a night club under siege
The complicated ring structure of the auger snail
gives the soft-handed workers somewhere to hide
when their workplace is stormed by killers
Shell-casings lie spent as the tide of soldiers recedes,
leaving two sisters cowering under a car, one swallowing her pain
into complicated structures designed for breath
Meredith-001 (2)

Meredith Pitt lives in Sydney. Her poetry
has recently appeared in Meanjin and