Real Boy

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My fiancee calls me Pinocchio.

And we laugh
because we both know the story.

I lit a fire.
I made the whale sneeze,
but somehow got snagged on a tooth.

They say that a boy
needs to roll in the ashes
before he can be a man.

I’m still finding soot in pleats
and embers in breast pockets.

Sometimes when I speak to people
I get nervous.

Nervous of judgement,
of being inadequate.

But then I notice a trail
of dust behind them
and I know
I’m not alone.


Photograph by Sara Cimino

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Lucas Howard

When I was seven I started copying poems out of a book and telling people they were mine. When I ran out of good ones to copy, I had to start writing my own. I have been performing and organising nights on the UK spoken word scene now for over seven years and am most of the way through writing the first draft of my first novel 'Zedlist', which is serialised on here. As the story is in fetal form, any critiques or suggestions are most welcome.

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