When Angel looks in the mirror / it looks away first /

star fist open jaw / how the shine  becomes you / clean

friend / taller than yesterday / spine an unravelling plot /

you odd insistence / my king of the blue tattoo / eyebrow

pinned like a butterfly / when you walked in the room

/ it became you. How you brought the silence in with

you. How you brought the night to its knees. back there.

where the quiet ones go. / & now / the night won’t stop

texting / how many times have we walked home / you &

I / only to find home walking / softly behind us / I have

seen you leap over language / to push a man back inside

himself / throw pint glasses like seeds / speak to every

woman as though she were your mother / I have seen

your fists sob / at the centre of every boi/ is a bare room

/ & inside a swinging lightbulb / a wire thin girl dances

/ stays with you even when you look away / angels don’t

fall from Heaven / they leave at closing time / unscrew

their fucks in the backs of black cabs / abandon their

bodies / beneath a girl beneath a duvet beneath the wet

dilated night. on fire. 

from C+nto and Othered Poems (The Westbourne Press, 2021), © Joelle Taylor 2021, used by permission of the author.

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