This Is Not A Rescue

I want to tell you it will not be as you expect. For years
you have hammered in stakes, handed men the rope and said
consume me with fire. Most have run – one does not burn
a witch lightly. This one is water. He’ll unbind you, take
your hands in his and say remember how you love the ocean?
Come with me. 
You’ll go to the beach on a cloudy day, watch
foam rise from the sea’s churn until sun appears. In turn
you’ll say let’s go in and even though he hesitates, this man
will kick off his shoes and wade to his shins. Jellyfish,
shot with pink like satin dresses, will dance between you, flash
iridescent. His body is all whorls and planes like smoothly sanded
planks used to make a boat, his ears are pale shells you hear
the waves in, he smells of sandalwood and salt, his eyes
are ocean. He’ll spot the pebbles that in secret you have sewn
into your skirts and give you his penknife to unpick them.

You can’t swim with those
. He’ll teach you to skim. The pebbles
break the surface like question marks. You’ll throw each last one in. 

by Emily Blewitt

‘This Is Not A Rescue’ is copyright © Emily Blewitt, 2017, and reprinted from This Is Not A Rescue by permission of Seren Books.

Notes from Seren:

This Is Not A Rescue is a sparkling debut collection from Carmarthen-born Emily Blewitt, featuring poems on varied subjects from being a ‘woman poet’ to the heroes of Jane Austen. There are also some winning, unusual love poems and work inspired by crows and a couple of characters from ‘Star Wars’. Read more about the collection on the Seren website.

Emily Blewitt read English Language and Literature at St Hilda’s College, Oxford, and has an MA in Film and Literature from the University of York. In 2010 she returned to Wales to begin a PhD in English Literature at Cardiff University, where she specialised in poetic representations of pregnancy in nineteenth-century and contemporary women’s writing, graduating in 2016. She has published poetry widely, her work appearing in The RialtoProleThe Interpreter’s HouseAmbitPoetry WalesFuriesChevalNu2: Memorable Firsts, and in Brittle Star. The title poem from her debut collection, This Is Not ARescue, was Highly Commended for best individual poem in the 2016 Forward Prizes, and is published in  TheForward Book of Poetry 2017 . You can read more about Emily’s work on her website and follow her on Twitter.

Seren has been publishing poetry for 35 years. We are an independent publisher specialising in English-language writing from Wales. Seren’s wide-ranging list includes fiction, translation, biography, art and history. Seren’s authors are shortlisted for – and win – major literary prizes across Britain and America, including the 2014 Costa Poetry Prize (for Jonathan Edwards’ My Family and Other Superheroes). Amy Wack has been Seren’s Poetry Editor for more than 20 years. You can find more details about Seren on the publisher’s website and follow Seren on Twitter and on Facebook

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