You, Me and the Bookcase

The back seat of a car wasn’t ever
big enough. The boot had to be left open
to bring home our book case.

Fitting corners through doorways
allowed us to feel the grain, the scent
of polish rushing to our heads. Out of the rings

left by two glasses and what we surmised
a bottle of burgundy, we invented a story
about a couple like us, who at weekends scoured

shops for texts about the world. Atlases,
dictionaries, photo albums, and the collected works
of philosophers share the shelves.

We’ve devised an order of sorts,
and positioned spines so sometimes
we lie horizontal with the titles.

Although we haven’t filled all the gaps,
we’re learning it’s not just touch
and visual pleasure, but finding the words.

by Sally Flint

This Saturday 29 November at the Black Cultural Archives in Brixton, Hannah Lowe (Teaching Fellow in Creative Writing at Brookes) will be running a poetry workshop and taking part in a discussion with Mike Phillips in an event related to her fascinating recent publication, Ormonde. There are a few tickets left! Visit the Hercules Press website for more details.

Next Wednesday 3 December, Professor Maximilian de Gaynesford (University of Reading) will speak on ‘Why Poetry Matters’: 6pm (drinks and nibbles from 5.30) at the Ashmolean Museum’s Education Centre (nearest entrance from St. Giles). The event is free, but turn up early to secure a seat! More details can be found on the Ashmolean website.

‘You, Me and the Bookcase’ is copyright © Sally Flint, 2014. It is reprinted from Pieces of Us (Worple Press, 2014) by permission of Worple Press.

Notes from Worple Press:

Sally Flint grew up in the West Midlands and now lives in Exeter. Her poetry and prose have been widely published, anthologised and won awards. She teaches creative writing, facilitates community workshops and is co-founder/editor of Riptideshort story journal and Canto Poetry at the University of Exeter. She also works with Devon Drugs Service and Devon Community Foundation on a project called ‘Stories Connect’, based on the University of Massachusetts’ programme, ‘Changing Lives through Literature.’ Her research interests include healthcare in the arts, and the evolution of ekphrasis, especially the relationship between poetry, visual art and technology.

Worple Press was founded by Peter and Amanda Carpenter in 1997 and publishes 6-8 books a year by new and established poets: collections, pamphlets, works in translation, essays, interviews. Early authors included Iain Sinclair, Joseph Woods, Beverley Bie Brahic, Kevin Jackson and the acclaimed American nature poet Peter Kane Dufault. Recent collections (2014/2015) include Andy Brown’s Exurbia, Isabel Galleymore’s Dazzle Ship, Martyn Crucefix’s A Hatfield Mass, Julian Stannard’s The Street of Perfect Love, and Clive Wilmer’s UrbanPastorals. More information can be found at the publisher’s website, and on Facebook and Twitter.

Copyright information: please note that the copyrights of all the poems displayed on the website and sent out on the mailing list are held by the respective authors, translators or estates, and no work should be reproduced without first gaining permission from the individual publishers.