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Open Tue 12 – 6pm, Wed – Sun 12 – 8pm
Royal Festival Hall (Level 5), Southbank Centre, LondonOpen Tuesday 12 noon - 6 pm, Wednesday to Sunday 12 noon – 8 pm
Recorded at 'Citizens of the Archive' at the National Poetry Library, July 2017
Image by Amaal Said
When you stand arms warm with froth, all you see
is a wall of stone, the suggestion
of weather, dirty glass. You know your hands
will smell of leftovers, garlic and grease,
something sweet; you will not smell good enough
to eat. When the water and steel has made
you their prisoner, he will stack himself
behind you, close as a knife. He will tell
you he needs you more than food or fortune,
spoon or cup; kiss your neck like the scent
of sunlight. And you will grow fat on the way
he holds your waist, hungry as a dying man.
Until the dirty water empties itself
against the grain in a silver tide
and you can dry your ten pink fingers one
by one; take his hand and show him what
that wooden door in the stone wall is for,
broken glass, how soft the rain is as it falls.