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Lydia Kennaway was born in New York but has lived in Yorkshire for over 40 years. Published widely in small magazines, she won the Flambard Prize in 2017 and is currently completing an MA in Writing Poetry at Newcastle University. She’s a cellist, so her ear for lyric is not wholly unexpected. But her tonal range is astonishing—here she walks, skips, dances and strides between love, mischief, elegy and . . . rage.

First printed April 2019, now reprinted due to popular demand.


Her diaper is her mawashi
and she dips into the sankyo
with perfect form: 
a deep, straight-backed squat,
hands on thighs.

Now she performs the shikiri:
stands, toes the mark, crouches,
stands again, scowling
at that thing she must have
across the room.

Walking starts not in the feet
or the legs or the inner ear
but in the eyes.
I want is the small, fierce
engine of mobility.

Slowly, she lifts one foot.


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