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17 Melbourne Road

Oliver Reynolds

‘A room at the top of the street / preserving his life in sunlight’

6 March 1989

Salman Rushdie

‘Damn, brother. You saw what they did to my face? / Poked out my eyes. Knocked teeth out of place’.

A Cloudless Sky

Michael Dickman

‘A cloudless sky and I’m back / an ice-cold sky-blue rag / for my eyes’

A Description of the Architectural Impact of My Home, Age 7

Saïd Sayrafiezadeh

‘my apartment is neither over / nor under the sidewalk, / but both at once’

A Meeting of Minds with Henry David Thoreau

Andrew Motion

‘What am I doing here more than looking – / which I would stop / only to help things through their vanishing’

A Numbered Graph That Shows How Each Part of the Body Would Fit Into A Chair

Mary Jo Bang

‘It’s a simple truth that one can occupy two / places at one time while sitting in a chair—the same way a / poseable doll can be divided from her dress.’

A Pinch of Salt

Andrea Brady

‘When we’re close to weaning / ourselves history gives us its reasons / to return’

A Sharing Economy

Karen Solie

‘The Paying Guest rises in the middle of the night / to turn off the radio where no radio exists’

A Spell For Going Safely Forth By Day

Jynne Martin

‘The hunter pushes a bullet beneath his tongue to fix his aim, / or is it to stave off his thirst?

a style

Dara Wier

‘a style says conviction in indifference / conviction in style’

Abingdon Square Park

Rowan Ricardo Phillips

‘I once had had a thought / About a thought I once had had.’

Accidental

Sadaf Halai

‘Of the 36 views of Fuji, this one is the strangest: / the great wave off Kanagawa, frozen and tempestuous, / both sound and silence.’

Advice Column

Kazim Ali

‘Me always untorn and enslaved / Weird notions of gender and ground / Nothing but you between me and god.’

After Ann Lauterbach

Emily Critchley

‘The piano eyes me / from its corner – / colluding with the past’

All the Good Help

Togara Muzanenhamo

‘He will not understand her fascination / for rain, these summer months of water / that somehow keep the money coming in.’

Ange Mlinko | First Sentence

Ange Mlinko

‘I rediscovered the efficacy of meter (or the ‘contrast between fixity and flux’) when I was stuck in a shark tunnel with my kids and was afraid I was coming down with a panic attack.’

Apparition

Mark Doty

‘an orange plastic basket of compost / down from the top of the garden – sweet dark, / fibrous rot, promising’

Après

Jamie McKendrick

‘greener / for an alien crop of hogweed higher / than us’

Artichoke

Angélica Freitas

‘amelia, the real woman, / ran away with the bearded lady’

Assuming the Habits of the Day and Night

Vahni Capildeo

‘my every day is a being in of being / a mixity of worlds’

At Thirty

Paula Bohince

‘At thirty, I fled from my life / in a hailstorm and firestorm’

Best Book of 1996: The Lost Lunar Baedeker

Natalie Eilbert

‘Mina Loy has been a preferred voice in my head, echoing with a signature delirious chant as a kind of primordial poetry mother.’

Beyond Sunset

Mary Ruefle

‘Red sadness never appears sad . . . it appears in flashes of passion, anger, fear, inspiration and courage, in dark unsellable visions; it is an upside down penny concealed beneath a tea cosy.’

Bianca Burning

C.K. Williams

‘The sexual terror lions are roaring into my ears as I make my way between their cages’

Bicske

Joanna Walsh

‘For us, discomfort is a hard feeling. / Almost as hard as hate. / Almost as hard as fear.’

Biographical Detail

Ángel González Muñiz

‘The cockroaches in my house complain because I read at night’.

Bird of Fire

Rowan Ricardo Phillips

‘No more, no longer the sweet difference / Between real and dream I knew.’

Biscotti Boys / On Men Who Wear Living as Loosely as Their Suits

Momtaza Mehri

‘salmaan the second son & his mama’s seventh seal by way of underwater & underemployment’

Black Against the Sky, the Giant Mothers

Selima Hill

‘Black against the sky the giant mothers / are whispering together in the moonlight’

Black Rot and Mildew

Leontia Flynn

‘a look I’d managed to accessorize / with raw dermatological distress.’

Blue Sky Thinking

Gillian Clarke

‘Let’s do this again, ground the planes for a while and leave the runways to the racing hare.’

Blueberries

James Lasdun

‘I’m talking to you old man. / Listen to me as you step inside this garden’

Calorific

John Kinsella

‘They are superbly and viscerally unreal / and I feel their living drive’

Cassette-tape

Javier Zamora

‘I will etch visas on toilet paper and throw them from a lighthouse.’

Cassiopeia (three back-to-front songs)

Diana Anphimiadi

‘Anyway, I did not die. / I lined the sky, inside-out.’ Translated from the Georgian by Jean Sprackland and Natalia Bukia-Peters.