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    [ID] => 20175
    [post_author] => 23
    [post_date] => 2019-08-12 14:24:37
    [post_date_gmt] => 2019-08-12 14:24:37
    [post_content] => In the older photograph
my eyes are two frowning pockets,
and my chest only housed knots and clauses.
I used fast shutter speeds to capture photographs
before sadness spilled into the frame.
I was never one to track progress, but today I did.

Before taking that selfie, I bent the sun
toward my face and poured it into my void
like cement filling the cracks of a wall.
My troubled teenage years lingered in my throat
like a shoplifter in a supermarket aisle.

What a difference 5 years makes, today
my skin is no longer a carousel of masks.
Praises be to a thick syrup of therapy,
a puree of prayer, peelings of coping mechanisms,
a cup of my mother’s honeyed voice.

In the second photograph
the white space is filled with a safe noise.
My shoulders are firm and upward,
my eyes are two glowing pebbles.
Not even an edit can smudge this moment.
    [post_title] => Two Photographs
    [post_excerpt] => 
    [post_status] => publish
    [comment_status] => closed
    [ping_status] => closed
    [post_password] => 
    [post_name] => two-photographs
    [to_ping] => 
    [pinged] => 
    [post_modified] => 2019-08-12 14:26:44
    [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-08-12 14:26:44
    [post_content_filtered] => 
    [post_parent] => 0
    [guid] => http://poems.poetrysociety.org.uk/?post_type=poems&p=20175
    [menu_order] => 0
    [post_type] => poems
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            [wpcf-published-in] => 
            [wpcf-date-published] => 2019
            [wpcf-summary-description] => This poem was commissioned as part of the #MyMentalHealthJourney campaign, delivered by Spread the Word and BUREAU. Read our interview with Theresa Lola about the campaign here.
            [wpcf-rights-information] => 
            [wpcf-poem-award] => 
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    [poet_data] => stdClass Object
        (
            [ID] => 20176
            [forename] => 
            [surname] => 
            [title] => Theresa Lola
            [slug] => theresa-lola
            [content] => Theresa Lola is a British Nigerian poet. She is the 2019/2020 Young People’s Laureate for London. She is an alumna of the Barbican Young Poets programme. Her debut poetry collection In Search of Equilibrium was published by Nine Arches Press In February 2019. She is leading on #MyMentalHealthJourney, a project run by Spread the Word and BUREAU. Find an interview with Theresa Lola on Young Poets Network.
        )

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stdClass Object
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    [ID] => 20176
    [forename] => 
    [surname] => 
    [title] => Theresa Lola
    [slug] => theresa-lola
    [content] => Theresa Lola is a British Nigerian poet. She is the 2019/2020 Young People’s Laureate for London. She is an alumna of the Barbican Young Poets programme. Her debut poetry collection In Search of Equilibrium was published by Nine Arches Press In February 2019. She is leading on #MyMentalHealthJourney, a project run by Spread the Word and BUREAU. Find an interview with Theresa Lola on Young Poets Network.
)

Two Photographs

Theresa Lola

In the older photograph
my eyes are two frowning pockets,
and my chest only housed knots and clauses.
I used fast shutter speeds to capture photographs
before sadness spilled into the frame.
I was never one to track progress, but today I did.

Before taking that selfie, I bent the sun
toward my face and poured it into my void
like cement filling the cracks of a wall.
My troubled teenage years lingered in my throat
like a shoplifter in a supermarket aisle.

What a difference 5 years makes, today
my skin is no longer a carousel of masks.
Praises be to a thick syrup of therapy,
a puree of prayer, peelings of coping mechanisms,
a cup of my mother’s honeyed voice.

In the second photograph
the white space is filled with a safe noise.
My shoulders are firm and upward,
my eyes are two glowing pebbles.
Not even an edit can smudge this moment.