Moonshot

Moonshot Sally
Dead pretty
Madwoman

Introduce your guide
For the perplexed
Broken Man

Architect the demise of
This Longer Body
From the Bonus of Laughter

Enjoy your cackling
Amongst the attic of
Unremarkable Stars

Moonshot Sally
Some Lady
Displaced


I created this poem from an exercise I did at a creative writing workshop I recently attended. Being based in the beautiful Leeds Library, this task involved collecting ten book titles from around the building and working them into a poem.

Strangely, mine had a lot to do with gender and otherness, which led to this weird little poem. It isn’t perfect, polished or even any good, but I enjoyed the sparsity and ambiguity of it. Its style is also incredibly different to what I usually write, and I quite like its vague interpretations.

One of the titles was The Madwoman in the Attic, a book by Gilbert and Gubar (and one I found extremely reminiscent of my undergraduate Literature degree) and it is a study of entrapped women in literature, particularly within Jane Eyre. This title tied the others together and I almost found the poem leading me down a modern portrayal of “mad” Bertha May locked up in the attic by Mr Rochester, much to Jane Eyre’s disgust.

I would highly recommend, for anyone who enjoys writing and wants to get inspired, to find local writing workshops you can attend. Most are inexpensive, some are even free, and are often led by published authors. Despite the fact I was the youngest person in my workshop by at least 40 years, I learned so much from listening to the other writers, and wrote poems I would not have thought to otherwise.

Photo by Anthony Guay on Unsplash

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