Poem in Which A Fridge is Broken

I think that sometimes we have lives in which we
happen simultaneously, a dream for example
is one, a poem is another

this is not a new thought,
I borrowed it from someone I haven’t met yet.

There are people living in houses who believe that
they understand you – they don’t. They assure me
in text that they understand, as if that were

Get on board with the wind, says the leaf
says the crisp packet, there are bees to my
right loving themselves, I hum so that our
frequencies are (quieter than at first) not separate,
there are folks to my left discussing a
woman they would like to get to know
better. Listen, the fridge is humming
along with us, I pretend I did not break it,
you did when you smashed your fist
against the door in an argument,
you might agree in a dream
that my sadness broke it.

I’m ok.
I can watch the news and pretend
that it is not broken.
The sun is shining, it’s too hot for this
time of year, summer is not meant to
be so hot, it is ok
if it is between 21 and 27 degrees,
in a second life you woke up to a day
that could not be ruined by 11 o clock
like a poem which is impermeable,
not this poem, which is semi-permeable
or if it is raining then entirely
In the cafes, and restaurants, and
in people’s kitchens, and in front of televisions and
at desks and between appointments, and on
the beach, people swallow their grief with their lunch,
it tastes like grief tastes, in a third life
people don’t notice, they think their lunch tastes
like this.

Dollie Stephan

Coming soon in Poems in Which Issue 4

The editors are delighted to announce the contributors for Issue 4:

Lutz Seiler translated by Alexander Booth

Melissa Lee-Houghton

Mark Waldron

Abigail Parry

Emma Hammond

Bobby Parker

Anat Zecharia translated by Irit Sela

Josephine Corcoran

Dollie Stephan

Samuel Prince

Francine Elena

Nicola Gledhill

Fiona Moore

Paul Stephenson

John Canfield

Alexander Speaker

Martha Sprackland

Eireann Lorsung

Joey Connolly

Anna Selby

Sarah Wedderburn

Karl Smith

Giles Goodland

and new artwork from Sophie Gainsley