The poem

Sarah Gillespie 

Public Prosecution

You wouldn’t know love
if wild horses pulverised your sinoatrial node into hallucinogenic stardust,
poured it from a diamante spoon into the mouth of Aphrodite and broadcast
the whole event live on Smooth FM

You wouldn’t know remorse
if it chewed your earlobes in an orange room packed with unpacked suitcases, shredded litigation
transcripts and the autobiography of Judas Iscariot serialised on a distorted tannoy
next to your bed of nails

You wouldn’t know respect
if Otis Redding was your gardener

You wouldn’t know joy
if a convoy of hot air balloons
swept you across the solar system
and dropped you on a moonlit port
in time to sling champagne bottles against a ship carrying sherbet to the Benny Goodman Orchestra

You wouldn’t know longing
if 16 orphans stitched you into a corset of viola strings and plucked you in E minor

You wouldn’t know I miss you
if the mere mention of your name slapped me with airbags triggered by an impact sensor
that is impossible to switch off

Sarah Gillespie is an Anglo-American songstress, writer, artist and poet, who’s released four critically acclaimed albums in the last ten years. She is headlining Soho’s Ronnie Scotts Jazz Club on 27 June 2021 with her seven piece band

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