As feminists we want to support the incredible courage, insight and a dedication to the truth that challenges even the bravest of us when we ‘stop colluding with a culture that makes so many of us feel physically inadequate?*’
Poetry has always been a vehicle for charged, personal expressions. The combination of new voices and previously published poets in our latest collection Hallelujah for 50ft Women (Bloodaxe 2015) has created an anthology of extraordinary and moving diversity. It is an exhilarating and sometimes difficult read.
Our relationship to our bodies is affected by many things including culture, religion, family, sex, hunger, pleasure and pain. This new anthology is inspired by a passionate desire to celebrate our bodies in a fully realised way leaving Barbie’s grotesque silent pliability in her box for good. Instead of pouting, our mouths have the power of language, our romantic fluttering hearts give and receive compassion, skin ages with grace when we see beauty in everything, a pierced belly button connects us to our ancestors and a belly needs to be strong before it’s flat.
Flaunting it or fixing can never do full justice to the beauty and complexity of how we live according to our unique understandings, desires and destinies.
I’ve never seen a soul detached from its gender,
but I’d like to. I’d like to see my own that way.
free of its female tethers. Maybe it would be like
riding a horse. The rider’s the human one,
but everyone looks at the horse.
Reviews for Hallelujah for 50ft Women:
“…jaw droppingly profound…”Mary Jacob
“Hallelujah for 50ft Women goes straight in as one of my favourite poetry anthologies…”Jade Craddock
“…evidence that women’s bodies are clever and powerful, and that a woman in control of her own voice – a woman who is a poet – is 50ft tall, she’s wearing a red dress, and she’s coming for you.”Jordan Savage
Sue Jones-Davies and Amy McCauley (50ft poet) reading at Aberystwyth Arts Centre. Podcast contains a discussion about the use of words some listeners may find offensive.