Valeria Melchioretto

Exclusive Persephone Interview

Even before the skin was stretched around my fragile skeleton
And the organs arranged, I knew about the bottom line

Some God forgot to prime me with rabbit skin glue to paint my eyes
My mouth and my sex. So it became clear as it could get
I had to sink right between the lines to find an edge
That day my soul was dispatched in a submarine down the river Styx.
No explorer crossed or deadlines to get to this place without central heating.

Here I face my deepest truth, uncomfortable, bare and blunt.
I send myself postcards, stamped with birthmarks. They rise
To my attention, then explode like parcel bombs

A remote place to grow up, grow wise, grow old. No souvenir shop
Or pleasure-dome. A limbo of longings. Hanging on from quarantine
To quarantine. Until on expiry day I return limb by limb to a god
Of pawnbrokers, to a prop-room attendant who has lent me a body
For a lifetime, a myth of existence. I accept the small print.

Born in the last century, Valeria writes visual poetry and lives in London. She is also a painter whose artwork was recently exhibited at the Poetry Café.


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