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Elinora Westfall: My Own

Image: Unsplash, downloaded ( 18.11.2022.

Coal to Burn the World

I do not belong here.

I, do not belong

Belly down against flat earth I,

Splinter like sheet glass

beneath boots that crack my spine

  1. Do not belong.

I, a feather bed to my own head

My Own, very particular kind of madness

Lying here, on the ground

Life in my teeth, my mouth, my tongue

But still, I breathe

Still not choked after

All these

All these

All of these


One, after the other, after the next, after the next

Life. I see it now, stretched too thin with a punctured eye and I see it

How the weeping willow would watch the river bed should I drown

belly up, this time

Eyes like sea glass

Mouth like a fish

Try them all,

Try them all,

These ways to sink a ship, to skin a cat, to catch a mouse

To break a heart

Sink me, rock bottom,

Drown me, slowly,

Take the coins from my mind’s eye and sell my universe for coal to burn the world


But still, I will breathe

Because, I

Do not belong.

About the Author: Influenced by David Bowie, Virginia Woolf and Sally Wainwright, Elinora Westfall is an Australian/British lesbian actress and writer of stage, screen, fiction, poetry and radio from the UK.

Her novel, Everland has been selected for the Penguin and Random House WriteNow 2021 Editorial Programme, and her short films have been selected by Pinewood Studios & Lift-Off Sessions, Cannes Film Festival, Raindance Film Festival, Camden Fringe Festival and Edinburgh Fringe Festival, while her theatre shows have been performed in London's West End and on Broadway, where she won the award for Best Monologue.

Elinora is also working on The Art of Almost, a lesbian comedy-drama radio series as well as writing a television drama series and the sequel to her novel, Everland.


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The image of Quasimodo is by French artist Louis Steinheil, which appeared in  the 1844 edition of Victor Hugo's "Notre-Dame de Paris" published by Perrotin of Paris.


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