The week T. Rex first topped the charts
I bought a book of Young British
and a pair of purple tights I cherished:
I dabbed runs with trails of nail polish,
tacked spiderlegs of cotton over holes,
wore them to school in my first rebellion.
I read the book in bed: its cover showed
men in tweed jackets gazing upwards,
cheekbones spotlit; the only woman was
scruffy in black, her eyes downcast, as if
she felt ashamed or shy. ‘She’ll never
get a bloke, looking like that,’ Mum said.
Next month I got a pair of tight blue flares
and a white t-shirt that showed my navel.
‘You’ll draw attention to yourself,’
Mum said, and knelt before me, tugging
my t-shirt to stretch it decent, ‘you’ll
end up in trouble if you dress like that.’
If you have any thoughts on this poem, Sharon Phillips
would be pleased to hear them.