I made a conscious decision in 1988 not to represent my body...It immediately declares female gender and I wanted to be more deft. (Helen Chadwick)
It's as easy to make an antibubble in your own kitchen
as it is to open up a crease in language
and reveal what you couldn't say yesterday.
Just a matter of squirting water onto water
without snapping the surface tension until liquid
surrounds a skin of air, surrounding liquid. My body's
a drop of water. Maybe the imperfections, the proliferating cells
help it refract the full spectrum. These last breaths,
air, water bubbling at my lips. The soap film is my skin:
permeable-for-some-things, membrane, separating-other-things,
this and that, the moving point between, the unsettled
limit, stretching and contracting under the breath
that comes and goes: I am this one, I am that one,
I breathe in and become everything I see.
Unpublished, used by permission of the author, copyright © Jo Shapcott 2006