Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Poetry for the masses

I have been blogging daily photos of Canberra for a few months now, as part of a worldwide project of City Daily Photo blogs which has been running for over five years. Every day I wander through some of my favourite places through the eyes of photographers living in them, and one in particular caught my attention this morning.

London Daily Photo featured a shot of one of the Poems on the Underground, a series which has been running for 25 years. The poems are placed inside the trains, in the spaces that normally contain advertising, and are a wonderful opportunity to read something you might not otherwise be exposed to. I saw a number of these on our trip last year, but had no idea the series had been running so long.

The poem on London Daily Photo today is Ourstory, by Carole Satyamurti.


Let us now praise women
with feet glass slippers wouldn’t fit;

not the patient, nor even the embittered
ones who kept their place,

but awkward women, tenacious with truth,
whose elbows disposed of the impossible;

who split seams, who wouldn’t wait,
take no, take sedatives;

who sang their own numbers, went uninsured,
Knew best what they were missing.

Our misfit foremothers are joining forces
underground, their dusts mingling

breast-bone with scapula, forehead
with forehead. Their steady mass

bursts locks; lends a springing foot
to our vaulting into enormous rooms.

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