Rendering intimacy impossible, deploy lifeboats (mark

yourself safe). Not listening as such, more waiting to

speak, above all mark yourself, it’s so important to be

safe. Carry on, they demand, we’re not reeling / we are

reeling. Is this the place for a fountain reference?

Probably. ‘What first attracted you to your wife, sir?’

‘Her delicacy / her ankles / her hatred of the Tories.’


               Alive twice over but that’s a whole life gone too

               you know I’m sorry, he holds his hands up, I’m

               sorry, he backs away: my conscience couldn’t

               keep company with your body I say, your body?

               it just made me think: it’s only a nine month stay.


The next time you lay a hand on me, I’ll make a

perfect gleaming dive into the Thames. Aren’t you

glad / to be here? I am.


was born in 1993, and is currently writing a PhD thesis on maternity, sacrifice and political economy in nineteenth-century fiction. She teaches undergraduates at the University of Cambridge, and primary school children in Hackney.



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