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Walk to Rome - Lucy Hurst

i watch her move so effortlessly;

breaking down my polite restraint

with an innocence self-forged and determined.

we set out to walk the river till we hit the ring road;

i’ve found part of me here, she tells me,

& how she found the rest on her walk to Rome.

she spills a collection of edible words:

teaspoon

hamstring

pissing in fields

austerity, half-price

industry in collapse.

in her speaking, i become aware of our kindnesses

as a thing beaten into the both of us;

our strength as a side effect of brutality.

the river tells me to stay near it a little longer,

it also tells me that those who cannot swim, drown.

neither are viable options.

in the small hours,

i am passed from the doctor’s hands

into my mother’s

back & forth,

& so forth.

the water gestures at me & i learn what it means to be disabled in nature.

i’ve never been a slave to my body,

i’m a slave to much more menial things:

waiting lists

desperation

canteen food

[list cont.]

there’s an ethical code of conduct to hurting around others;

it seems wrong to say, wrong to do.

sufferings are halved when shared,

& love is always doubled.

if god were to hide it’s heaven anywhere,

here would be a good place to start.

if this is a part of you,

i want to submerge myself in your waters

& slosh about in your mind.

these things are all far greater than i will ever be,

& the pain that resides into me neatly

must be smaller.


Lucy is 22, based in Lincolnshire, and currently studying for

her MA in Creative Writing at YSJ.

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