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Bathtime, Sophia Holme

Seven thirty submerge

Sipping whiskey with honey with

lemon juice stinging the ripping on my

cuticles pumice stone nipping at my heels'

dead layers - don't go too far now. Pulling

an old razor back like a curtain, revealing

a smooth skin sky, a constellation of roots and

the water mucked: hair-grainy, shave-scummy

to the tune of some somber song, voice muffled, phone face-down on a towel.

My chest is singed, I'm swigging, and I remember I'm soft inside,

deeply soft, bruised always, my mind is like silken tofu,

but I smooth a mask over my face anyways, and it hardens to porcelain.

Eight pm and the spendy face wash,

in all it's milky slippiness, rubbed in careful little coin-motions

but these careful gestures are feeling stupid,

so I abandon my decolletage to dry chalky, my ankles bleeding diffusely,

and a row of red dots running at the bend of my knee.

Pull myself up to confront the rich and woozy air.

Shampoo squirted on a dry scalp, a cursory scrub through

While suds slide and huddle on my legs

Shifting the handle and the static hiss of the shower - the shower's gone cold,

And the cold slugs me, I'm shivering hard as the water itself,

it's calcium coated showerhead whispering vicious nothings

into my neck. So I pop out goosebumped

as a slaughtered hen, hairdrops raining on the floor.

Eight thirty emerge, swiping at the fogged mirror searching among

the light and the steam, I'm in there somewhere, wrung out

and slick, sated and clean.


Sophia Holme is a poet, writer and bookseller made in Canada but now based in Oxford, England. In her spare time, she enjoys running, adsorbing as much queer literature as possible and drinking a lot of coffee. Tweet at her here @Holmesophia

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