Bed of Nails – Nail Beds, by Mandy Beattie


​​ Before chemical spills and pandemics
​my finger nails used to be
​quarter moon Botticelli’s. Half
​ moons when I had bones of double
​ cream and vegan-inked in strawberry
moon and peridot. Once in a super blue blood moon
a French manicure with white wavelets: without
fish scales, guano, crushed beetles
and deadly nightshades they put in nail polish as protein –
Pointing the index finger a tattie bed
after tugging nettles. Middle nail has hang-nails
Ring finger a rock-stack. Peedie nail bit
between aikle’s into a sixteenth moon; an own goal
in the raffia-hoop – Thumb nail’s thumbs-up
inside the Arc de Triomphe
On the other hand
a peeling shallot. Pinkie stubbed its toe; a pitted moon
Third nail’s a salt cave
with stalactite-striations — A sign
on my nail-palm I could read in tea-leaves
when I wore a fur muff and long cloak. Toe nails
an obsessive compulsive
buzz cut. My skin used to be
slathered and seduced with calendula balm. Each hand
Rapunzel in circlets of gold, silver and semi-precious pebbles
​Now my nails are geek-nails
​in the buff
​with an edge


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *