It starts with birth by Ella Walsworth-Bell

Gutache cramps my style
I love him, we’re
married, it’s natural
but we’re afraid.
Wishing for freedom
yet wanting the world
to stay only two.
Belly is tight as
a barrel bound with
iron bands. I moan.
My husband makes tea
and toast, as if guests
have called in. I ignore him.
Lights are low. Everyone’s
tired. Another midwife comes
‘Let’s get this done,’ she says
There’s a mewl, and this
thing emerges, this bloodied head
Our baby enters the world
And is loved.


Ella Walsworth-Bell is a speech therapist living and working in Cornwall. As a child, she washed up in Falmouth after crossing the Atlantic in a sailing boat with her parents. Myths, magic, and fairytales fascinate her. She writes poetry and short stories about love, acceptance, and disability. Follow her on Twitter @bellwalsworth and on Instagram @ellawbell.

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