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Post script

Tracey Emin

I was seven -

Mummy I said - one of the girls in my class

it’s her birthday - and this evening she’s having

a party - can I go


I put on my favourite party dress - Mum

carefully wrapped up some cheap Turkish jewellery

in a piece of tissue paper - for my gift -

And up the road I went - outside school five

or six little girls stood around - the girl

whose birthday it was arrived with her dad

in the car - and as everybody went to get

and her father sternly followed by saying

I’m afraid you’re not invited - you don’t

have an invitation -

I waited outside of school for as long as I

could - and after hiding the jewellery - I went home -

Mum - asked ‘did you enjoy the party’ - yes I said

it was lovely -


That night - I laid in bed and cried - I cried

myself to sleep - and in the morning I asked -

Mummy, what’s an invitation?


Originally from 'Exploration of the Soul' - 1994. Published in Magma No 10 (Summer 1997)