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THE MELITA HUME SHORTLIST 2014: BETHAN TICHBORNE (3 OF 11)


 


Bethan Tichborne (pictured) was born in London in 1984 and grew up in Tonbridge, where she attended Tonbridge Grammar School. She graduated from Exeter College, Oxford in 2008, where she studied Philosophy and Italian.
 
She is involved in social justice activism and has written for various political blogs including Bright Green, Liberal Conspiracy and New Internationalist. She works at a printing co-op in East Oxford that prints leaflets and zines for activists and community groups.
 
She was also shortlisted for the first Melita Hume Poetry Prize in 2012. Her poetry has appeared on nthposition.com, in Alan Morrison’s anthology Emergency Verse: Poetry in Defence of the Welfare State, and in a feature article in the Big Issue. She is related to the poet Chidiock Tichborne.

 
Sisyphus
 
The sun, the rain, the mud
the hooves, the sun, the dust
the archaeologist.

Silt shifts and unearths you
and the rivers will suck you up
and sort you, heavy bones here, light there.

In this river bend there are hundreds of teeth
and little else, pitted, spitting, twisted, bitten
into earth, chewing upwards, hungry for air.



poem COPYRIGHT THE POET 2014
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The runner-up is: Daniel Duffy - 'President Returns To New York For Brief First Visit'

Wheeler Light currently lives in Boulder, Colorado.



Life Jacket

summer camp shirtsI couldn’t fit in then
are half my size nowI wanted to wear
smaller and smallerarticles of clothing
I shrunk to the sizethat disappeared

of an afterthoughtin a sinking ship body
too buoyant to sinktoo waterlogged for land
I becamea dot of sand