Stone Telling

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by Tori Truslow

We came trained to turn the land on
to the sun's look, teach this world to be ours;
as others dress the hills — smart-lichen to blush
hot green across cold red — we drill the shining
soil, and slowly, in these thrice-stretched
summers, it Marsforms us.

See the forecasts we send back:
new curls of continent, the planet tempered
by our toil, just like home — but in these days we slough
off our soft flesh; I rebuild you, and you rebuild me
in these nights that unfix us, these skies
that rewire us, copper and light —

and remember what we said
young girls with red star-stoked eyes?
It wasn't new Earth we wanted, but to be
double-mooned, double-dreamed, multiformed in
mix-matched parts; to put our bodies on
each day, in shapes to fit our hearts

— and the red-gazy girls that
stand there still, and see this star
engreened, should know: how we twist
in the thinner grip of this gravity, how space
is the roar in our wires, and how I look past your
shoulder out to the black, and scratch a rocket into your back.

Tori Truslow was born in Hong Kong, grew up in Bangkok and now lives in the UK, on a hill overlooking the place where the Thames meets the sea. Tori's poetry has appeared in Goblin Fruit and been performed at festivals and spoken word events across the UK. Visit to find out more.

Read Tori's discussion of this poem over at the Roundtable!

Photography: Water seam as night landscape, by Liz Kasameyer.