If I try to sing from the silence thoughts of G-d come out sometimes
but I have never
worshipped and meant it.
Nobody has dared ask me to.
I’ve sung higher powers, let strangers
lick the metallic holy off the air around me,
it is sanctifying to make
a space for the devout to cry into,
but I have never
meant.                                                        Once down the pub
Javier said – quietly, smilingly – imagine you was
                                                        in a plane and it was going down,
                                                        yeah, if you was in
                                                        a car crash, don’t you think right
                                                        at the moment of truth
                                                        you’d call out to Him?
He’s alright, Javier, but he assumes
everything is hypothetical.
In my village people disapprove of speed limits
because the roads are long and quiet
except for the deer
and people disregard the except for the deer part
until the deer are right in front of them
undisregardable. And once
in the smoking area of a Bristol pub
a man I sort of knew put both hands around my throat,
squeezed like he was praying
like the space inside my neck                                        metallic
could be made holy                                                   by elimination.
No G-d
came out
my airways
but at least another man threatened to call the police. I didn’t bruise.


anna headshotAnna Kahn has been a Barbican Young Poet and a member of the Roundhouse Collective. By day she does something largely inexplicable in tech. Her work has been published by The London Magazine, Right Hand Pointing and The Rialto, amongst others. @AnnaCarlaKahn

Featured photo credit: Amanda Ollinik @Allunderonemoon