'Pliny the Younger to Tacitus' by Zenobia Frost | States of Poetry QLD - Series Two

On Pompeii, 79AD

The violence of that night. I sat
notating Livy, through
the earth’s contractions.

A thin dawn-choked sky
shook chariots. The crowd rolled back
onto itself. Neptune threw up animals.
Every thing convulsed. On the shore
across, a great black cloud broke

with light. Shrieks rang out: endless
night, with gods up and gone
like wayward husbands. Then:

the silent dark. We stood
to shake off ash.
The air was seasick
winter, dense with panic.
I thought I would perish
with the world itself.

Zenobia Frost

Zenobia Frost

Zenobia Frost

Zenobia Frost is a writer from Brisbane, Australia. Her work has appeared in Overland, Cordite, Arc (Canada), Scum, Woolf Pack, and the Hunter Anthology of Contemporary Feminist Poetry. In 2015, an ArtStart grant allowed her to study poetry in Germany at the Black Forest Writing Seminars and through digital workshops with Warsan Shire. Her first collection, Salt and Bone, was published by Walleah Press in 2014, and was shortlisted for the Thomas Shapcott Prize and Anne Elder Awards. In 2017, she was shortlisted for the inaugural Red Room Poetry Fellowship. Zenobia is a Master’s candidate at QUT, researching the poetics of transient domestic spaces in Queensland.