‘The Complaint’ is about my refusal to have children, the complex emotions that come with that decision, as well as the stigma attached to that decision. The sequence imitates the style of Denise Riley. Many of Riley’s poems reflexively explore an emotional landscape with lyric excess, and are curiously both candid and guarded. I wanted to imitate the wryness of that voice, with its rational, flamboyant, feminine character.
Two poems from 'The Complaint' have appeared in Black Box Manifold and can be read here. Two poems have appeared in Hotel and can be read here. Two poems appeared in Roundtable: Roehampton Journal for Academic and Creative Writing with a critical commentary and can be read here. One poem featured on the back cover of English Review, the educational magazine for A-level English Literature students, and can be read below:
Potential for Child-bearing as the Condition for the Worship of Woman-as-goddess
What’s that, She splits to become?
Moon and Waters plough up the cheerless self
that had languished with the weasel in the pennyroyal.
Which is to say, baby drags her Mother out with her,
blinking as though from Hell.
Such shrewd knowledge
drips from the dark
made of meat and fire and value.
A unicorn might weep joyful tears of feverfew -
O virgins, you tight hard buds of somewhere,
I believe in you.
[collaborations are] just a scapegoat that incarnates a communitarian burden of guilt about individual action and cleanses the community through its very expulsion via production.