by Louise McStravick

My body is composed of words

‘You are beautiful’

My limbs are pulled on strings

‘You have such lovely hair’

I am wrapped up in silk spun from well meaning mouths

‘Bum ting’

Strong hands crafted my soft bones out of hard rib

‘and they knew that they were naked’

My eyes create shapes I want to see

                                                    ‘you shouldn’t have cut your hair’

Empty spaces are filled with the heaviness of expectation

                                                    ‘you have a moustache’

I stick a needle through my lips


I camouflage myself in grey asphalt

                                                     ‘smile it isn’t that bad’

and flowers                                                             

                                                     ‘suck my dick’

My body is written between the lines of verses and chapters

                                                    ‘life begins at conception’

signed under smiles and camera flashes

                                                         ‘Heartbeat Bill’

A luxury to be taxed.

                                                ‘she gave me of the tree and I did eat’

My steps are hallowed

                                                             ‘you think you’re too nice’

My insides become uncertainty

 ‘side effects include
breast cancer,
cervical cancer,
weight gain,

I am made of thunderstorms

                                                   ‘is it that time of the month’

I crash, I deafen my ears

                                                       ‘don’t you want babies’

Rain falls from my eyes to my womb

                                                       ‘borderline abnormalities’

My womb a parasite, feeds off my insides

                                              ‘having an IUD fitted can be uncomfortable’

Silk spun, sharper than daggers

   ‘Blessed is the fruit of thy womb’

I am the mother of living.

Louise McStravick | @hyperbolou | @louloudoodoo

Louise is a writer and teacher from Birmingham now based in London. She writes to make sense of the world and her place in it and to unpick her imposter syndrome.

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