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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

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

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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