Chrys Salt is a poet with roots deeply planted in the theatre. She has produced four full poetry collections and four pamphlet collections and has performed on Radios 3 and 4, and done readings at venues and festivals across the UK and in the USA, Canada, France, Germany, Finland and India. She was awarded an MBE for services to the arts in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List in 2014. Born and brought up in Birmingham she left Erdington Grammar School early to train as an actor at The Birmingham Rep. A long and successful career in Repertory, Television, Radio and The West End followed, and this was combined with her poetry writing and performance, and later with writing and directing in the theatre and the publication of seven books for Actors. Chrys also ran workshops for professional actors at the Actors Centre in London for 20 years, experience she now brings to her 'Make Your Writing Speak' performance workshops for writers. In recent years she has been the recipient of two Creative Scotland Bursaries, one for completing Dancing on a Rock and the most recent (2017) for research in The Yukon for her next collection based on the Klondike Gold Rush. This is due to be published by Indigo Dreams Pub (IDP) in late 2019.
Lost There are no maps for poets in this country. The compass finger, mindless on its post will not direct us on this dangerous journey. An unfamiliar landscape tells us we are lost. Above the bramble and the rambling wood the technicoloured dragons wheel for bones of luckless travellers who have misconstrued the alien symbols on the milestones. We have nowhere to go but where we are, our options closed, the exit double locked. We may not take direction from a star. The stars are out and all the roads are blocked. How can we dare this nightmare territory? the shifting contours of the hills and coasts. the gibberish signposts and the season's enmity. What hand our touchstone in this land of ghosts? Hymn to Mastectomy Here’s to the woman with one tit who strips down to her puckered scars and fronts the mirror – doesn’t give a shit for the pert double breasted wonderbras sneaking a furtive gander at her missing bit. ‘Poor lady,’ they are thinking ‘can her husband bear to touch her? Will she ever dare to wear that slinky low-cut sweater’? Here’s to the woman with half a bust who wears her lack of symmetry with grace and moist with lust offers a single nipple like a berry to her lover’s tongue. Here’s to the single breasted ones come home, victorious from their wars wearing their wounds as badges on the chests of Amazons. ‘She ought to cover up its embarrassing, its shocking. I’m sure she thinks she’s very brave but everybody’s looking’! Here’s to those wondrous affrontages out on the scene in sauna, pool and gym those who when whole were dying – now less than whole become themselves again.
All poems are copyright of the originating author. Permission must be obtained before using or performing others' poems.
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