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Ovarium by Joanna Ingham

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Tender, loving and visceral, Overlap is a pamphlet of poems about a giant ovarian cyst. The poet charts her journey with the cyst, from diagnosis to surgery to recovery, and explores the way illness can make our own bodies mysterious to us. Ingham's poems are forensic as she looks at the disorientating and sometimes patriarchal language of anatomy and medicine. Often through the lens of motherhood, the collection shines a light on gynaecological illness and surgery, an experience shared by many but rarely discussed. I tried to think of you as fruit, growing against the sun-warm wall of my gut. Melon-headed, you nudged the leafy organs, dug out a place for yourself in the plot. I never guessed. I was only bloody earth to you, a coldframe full of light. - from 'Cyst'



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