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21 April 2021updated 08 Sep 2021 2:54pm

The NS Poem: When a story tells itself to stop

A new poem by Sarah Lasoye. 

By Sarah Lasoye

tell it it’s pretty, a joke to break the ice
                                                               smear blush on its cheeks

corkscrew a hole in its side
                                                     make something of the entrails

a rivulet to coax out the river
                                           though it won’t wind the same

soak it in warm water
                                  run its mother’s hands over its sore

arc, like a hymn
                       yes, call it a hymn

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take it somewhere to cool down
               check the switches and replace the bulbs

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tell it its sister asks of it every night
needs it to kill something in the corner of her room.

Sarah Lasoye is a poet and writer from London. She is an alumna of the Barbican Young Poets and a member of Octavia – Poetry Collective for Women of Colour. This poem is from her debut collection, “Fovea / Ages Ago”, to be published by Hajar Press on 29 April.

This article appears in the 21 Apr 2021 issue of the New Statesman, The unlikely radical