Difficult Cup



    after Wu Hao’s Duke Cups

    The china cup is frilled at the rim
    like tired lace and all over it
    ceramic tentacles extend
    to whisper if you drink me that way
    I’ll poke your eye out, you
    can’t quite press your fingers here
    your lips – like walking a mountain ridge
    at night with some romantic
    ideal ahead, you are not
    not figuring each step among
    the rocks –
there’s want and caution
    caught in you and a new
    vocabulary of pouting to be learnt.


    Isabel Galleymore is the winner of The London Magazine Poetry Competition 2015. Her first pamphlet, Dazzle Ship, was published by Worple Press in 2014. Her work has featured in magazines such as Poetry
    Review, Poetry London and commissioned by Bristol Festival of Ideas. Isabel is currently finishing her thesis on ecopoetics at the University of Exeter and working on her first full collection of poems. She will be the Charles Causley Trust Poet-In-Residence in January 2015.