Our New Voices series – where we publish the work of emerging fiction writers exclusively on the Granta website – is one of our most popular features.

Today, we’re launching a series called New Poets, showcasing some of the best new poetry submissions we receive and work from poets who have or are about to publish their first book or pamphlet. Emily Berry inaugurates this series: look out for more poets coming up in the next few months, and an interview with Emily tomorrow.


The Old Fuel

Half the time I’m frying onions                        or planning a meeting
or deciding whether to plait my hair                and it’s all happening
Other times       I wake up                                and the day’s flung out
in front of me like a roll of lino and I’d rather not              step on it
I’d rather stay in bed         thinking about you eating green oranges
and East African doughnuts saying            ‘who owns this monkey?’
to a group of boys;      one night I dream                   of entering a lift
with sides that aren’t attached to its floor            so when it goes up
I stay stuck on the ground;     I take the stairs       but    none of this
is enough    to reach you                            Some things never change:
John Humphreys is still shouting at someone                       between
seven-thirty and nine;    your shoes line up in the hall;         and I’m
cranking out oodles of love           the way an old spaghetti machine
cranks out spaghetti                                                 baby it’s hard work


Image by Jenny Downing

Emily Berry | Interview
Four Women, One Revolution