Lead – Jennie Farley


She wore shoes of lead to keep
her grounded. They were ugly,
heavy, gave her blisters.

One day in a fit of pique
she tore at the leather straps,
tugged off the buckles.

She rose up slowly, a wash
of cool air bathing her feet.
Upright, straight-backed,

her arms stiff by the sides
of her frilly pink frock.
There was no going back

to Mum and Dad and Chloe
the cat, the house and garden,
busy streets. Shoeless,

she rose above the steeple,
through a flock of birds,
through air balloons,

through clouds,
through the rays of the sun,
through midnight stars,

and kept on rising …


Jennie Farley is a published poet, workshop leader and teacher. Her poetry has featured in magazines including New Welsh Review, Under the Radar, The Interpreter’s House and webzines. She runs events for an iconic arts club, NewBohemians@CharltonKings. Her first collection My Grandmother Skating (Indigo Dreams Pub) published 2016. Her new book Hex (IDP) out 2018.

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