Amy Key




I think this is a Life Juncture, or what might be a teachable moment
(if falling onto the train tracks had actually made a difference,
if spending every Sunday alone weren’t motivation enough).
What does it mean ‘That was then, this is now’, does it mean
‘believe in yourself?’ Most minutes I feel sick.

There’s a diligence to having a body I might not ever master:
my face is always slipping off my face.
Most of the time I’m believing there’s a false panel in the armoire
and behind it the bear skin, personal credentials, the uncut
diamonds of future peril. I’ve discounted marriage

and begun to dream of someone who’d just lie-down
in the snow with me and die. I have taken
to carrying a dagger inscribed with How should a person be?
There’s a daydream in which I’m kneeling on the bridge
trying to fit a you into the photo (an angle I’d never allow).

Though I’ve mastered the aesthetics of aloneness
made it pristinely melancholy,
I’ll not be remembered for how the crystal bird box
makes pretty the wall when the conditions are right.
I’m just standing up as though this never happened.


AMY KEY‘s first collection Luxe was published in 2013. Her poems have appeared in POETRY, The Poetry Review, Poetry Wales and other magazines. She is co-editor of online journal Poems in Which. Last year she edited an anthology of poems on female friendship, Best Friends Forever, for the Emma Press.

Read more by Amy Key:

Another poem in B O D Y
Author’s Tumblr: Leopard-skin Pill-box Hat
Six poems on Peony Moon blog
Interview and reading on London Fields Radio