I wrote this at 19 on an Arvon course. After being sexually assaulted the first time I found it especially helpful to reflect on my childhood and connect back to my experiences then: 


My school blazer held tools to paint

a mask in place: lip gloss and powder

to match the self imposed uniform

we shared.


They fell into the space where

my hymn book should have been.

Bound in yellow card with the

worst hymns.


So the book was left at home and, slowly,

I allowed the creatures of my ambition

to nestle there. All fast asleep,

dreaming of a day


When I might choose the words

I speak and sing. Miniature dragons

breathing futuristic fire of the trail

blazer I would be.


All left close to my heart; while

the pockets I thrust my hands into

contained the meagre beginnings

of this plan.


Notes, grades, speeches, briefing papers,

clips of quotes tumbled together

with the slips of paper slid between

friends in class.


My breathing army to fuel

the fiery dragons. Hand up to

heart. Gently waking them

to the world.


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