Helen Ivory

Rookie (1969 / Luton)

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Helen Ivory was born in Luton in 1969 but has lived in Norwich for nearly 20 years. She did a Foundation Art and Design and has a BA (hons) in Cultural Studies from Norwich School of Art and Design. In 1999 she won a major Eric Gregory Award from the Society of Authors for a collection of then unpublished poems and in 2005 she was given an Art’s Council Writer’s Award.

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Best Poem of Helen Ivory


Residents are ghosts;
in every room.

Figures in armchairs
television news blazing,
sheets barely moving as they breathe.

In the kitchen,
a woman’s drape
marries her to the oven.

Upstairs, the sleeping forms
of children bedded down
for a long night.

Dust and ash fall inexplicably
not touching a soul.

Read the full of Safe-House
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