Niki Strange

I can write myself

into an open top car,
careering on corniche roads
in the Cote d’Azur’s brûlée noon.

No factor 50,
for the facts of my melanoma 
are of little consequence.

All is shadow-less velocity.
I am heliotropic to the blazing sun,
lit up, let loose.

Letter by letter, 
I am matter transported.
Written reckless.

I can write myself 

sprung from a high board,
suspended in defiance 
of Earth’s pull,

my balance restored.
Lost nodes, radiated breast,
sleeved right arm

parts of this new entirety
that tucks, revolves
then plunges

as steel into the
quenching water.
Written stronger.

Dr Niki Strange is currently poet in residence at Macmillan Horizon Centre, which supports people affected by cancer in Sussex (thanks to Arts Council/National Lottery funding). Along with creating new work, she has been delivering poetry workshops for former and current patients, drawing on her own cancer experiences. She passionately believes in poetry as a source of solace and is committed to supporting peoples’ wellbeing through the wonder of words.

Flights. Issue One, June 2021