Poem – Sarah Quigley

Once upon a time

You wake up one
morning, just like any other
morning, and everything
sounds the same. The

pigeons are chanting in the
plane trees, you hear the smack
smack of your neighbour’s fist on
his punchbag, and your bones

are absorbing the hum
of the ring-road. But when
you look in the mirror

someone’s imposed another
room on yours. Your cheek
bones are blurred and your
books don’t speak to you any
more. When you brush

your hair it hurts like
an illness and when you
step outside, the sky

forces you to your
knees and you realize this
is England and it’s not
your country, really.

Sarah Quigley

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