You cannot see yourself with your eyes shut by Sally Barrett

Sally Barrett’s You cannot see yourself with your eyes shut is a single poem across a number of sections that introduces a new voice, who has over the last few years regularly performed her work in Manchester.

Her writing is luminous and elusive, but with a firm grasp on the attention of the reader through her use of humour, shock and tenderness, characteristics that the poem sequence has in abundance.

Through a fragmented narrative – part memory, part dream – she unpicks the present through shards of the past. Like Eliot’s cacophony of voices, she pulls on a range of different registers, the “many voices” we hear as we struggle with our own mental health…our own desires.

After a startling opening, in section two (of fourteen) she is waking from an hallucinatory state and finding lyrical fulfilment in nature:

I am watching the water breathe
so I run and hide
in the shade with daisies
under the weeping willow
on an old sofa cushion
covered in dirt and grass

This easy melody is found throughout the piece, making the hallucinatory lucid, and the lucid dreamlike.

We are so pleased to make Sally Barrett the third poet to have a pamphlet published by Some Roast Poet, the pamphlet format providing an opportunity to give this long poem the space it needs and deserves.

Sally Barrett is originally from Leeds and currently lives in Manchester, where she works in social care. This is one of two books she has coming out in 2021-2. She has edited a number of limited edition “themed” zines.

Available to buy here with Paypal for £5 plus £2 P&P (UK Only.)

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