The smallest cluster

Of brown black

In an uneven smudge

At the left of my knee

Down a little

This marking

Etched into my skin

Could create a cloud

Of fog across my body

And make me sick

And it makes me sick

To see you sit

In that selfish sun

To burn and blister

That perfect body

To let your flesh turn

White to pink

And then to coffee stain

Whilst I lay here

Out of sight

To protect my already

Collapsing frame

Preserve some skin left

Not yet stretched

To fill the holes

As you stretch

Your ‘perfect tan’

Across sun lounger

And in every photo

You look good

With that bronze haze

And everyone stares at you

And say ‘You’re glowing’

And I look up

To watch the backs of their heads

Love Island is a fine example of pseudo-feminism

It is impossible to avoid Love Island this year, as much as I have tried and succeeded over the last couple of seasons. If it’s not on your TV it’s on social media, or the news, or in the magazines, or someone is talking about it on your bus on the journey home. I decided to take the plunge and find out what everyone has been raving about. 1 minute 23 seconds in to the first episode and I can’t go on. I have seen more unsolicited skin in that time than I have in the last month. I’d heard the rumours, but never quite expected it to be so, let’s say, in your face.

Oh and of course there’s the token ‘fatty’, who can we just highlight is not in the slightest bit overweight. How can a normal looking guy look so abnormal? His body is better than most men but sat next to the testosterone-infused six-packs that form the majority of the male population of the show, he looks almost ‘chubby’. Find the anomaly seems a much more suitable game for this show, than girls squashing watermelons with their bums.

All in all, it just feels like another programme that perpetuates an unobtainable ideal that the average person can never reach. I went to a talk the other day where a man spoke candidly about social media. He asked the audience: ‘How many times do you put down your phone after scrolling through Instagram and actually feel good about yourself?’. The answer for me, and most others in the crowd, was ‘rarely’. That’s not right. After this, I unfollowed all the fitness inspiration accounts, the Victoria’s Secrets models, the bikini brands, and the reality stars with their pimped-up body-parts and glam squads. What was left was a stream of art, architecture, photography, travel photos, and friends. It was cleansing. I’d recommend it.

Who knows, maybe I’m speaking on behalf of thousands of hushed voices, or maybe I’m just another insecure girl who’s jealous and doesn’t know how to handle it…

Coldplay are alright

1: You’re pretty

2: Okay

1: Okay?

2: I guess.

1: That’s what makes people interesting though, isn’t it? (2 nods). What you like might be something I hate (2 looks away). You might love Coldplay and I might hate Coldplay and you’ll never understand why I couldn’t love them and I’ll never know why you like them so much (2 looks at their feet). I think you’re unbearably gorgeous and you might think you’re nothing. But I’ll never understand why you can’t see what I see so clearly and you’ll never understand why I do.

Screenplay for a poem (2)

Fade in:

The camera focuses in on different parts of the body, clothed and unclothed, throughout the poem. People of all genders, ages and body types appear on the screen and the camera places specific emphasis on the unique details of each body.


Who are you?


Look, why doesn’t my face suit me?

Nothing lines up quite right

My cheeks push out too far and my lips aren’t central


I’m like socks not quite pulled up, crinkled at the ankle.


Why doesn’t my dermis match my epidermis?

And my epidermis match my blood?

I am pink and speckled brown


I’m like the torn wrapping from forgotten presents.


My wrinkles make maps across my body

But there is no end and there is nowhere to turn around

Each line breaks and clusters and makes me queasy


The bruises on my arms are foreign and deep

Unknown and undesired

Not because they hurt, but because they don’t


I blush when I’m nervous

I blush when I’m excited

I blush when I’m angry

I blush when I sleep


I’m like the dregs of beer left out in the sun.

Nobody I know


Fade out