Lily Blacksell

Lily Blacksell’s pamphlet, There's No Such Thing, was published by iginitionpress in February 2018. She has an MFA in poetry from Columbia University, where she was also a teaching fellow. Her poems, reviews and interviews have been published by BOMB magazine, Magma Poetry, the Emma Press, Sabotage, and elsewhere. Lily has performed her work around the US and UK, from Bowery Poetry Club to Battersea Arts Centre. In 2015, she was a finalist in the Roundhouse Poetry Slam. She has worked as a bookseller at the London Review Bookshop, as publicity assistant for Penned in the Margins and is currently working at London’s Southbank Centre.

Photo: Gabriel Kenny-Ryder


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Fri 8 March | 13:00 - 14:00 | £4.50/£3.50 | The Town Hall, Queens Gardens, Council Chamber


Girl Reaction

Thinking about it makes me mad and I mean it
in both senses of the word, not because I was
fourteen years old and just about out of my mind
with esteem, or because the burger-van man
said he didn’t like my sunglasses, or because
someone behind me in the crowd threw a cup
of his piss at my head, shouting out I was too tall.
I loved those glasses and there’s no such thing.
I hardly noticed because on stage there was
so clearly something wrong and it’s maddening,
exactly how literal is the inferno inferred by
hell of a show? How much did it all take out of her,
and how much did we give back? When she returned
in the Stones’ set to sing Ain’t Too Proud To Beg
with Mick, she must have known hundreds of thousands
could hear her, in tune, in time, in need, in jeans
and a t-shirt and beehive and it’s mad and I mean it
that Mick once declared he would rather be dead
than singing Satisfaction at forty. He’s seventy-three now,
he won’t shut up. Amy was only asking us to leave
her alone, singing to and by herself, but we never did,
she never was, she never got no


Lily Blacksell

From There’s No Such Thing (ignitionpress, 2018)