Yto Barrada Sleepers Series


The video shows a woman’s shape
in stone-rimmed fire.
Smoke torrents out.

Beyond her body, Lodz in snow.
Was that the town where they killed
returning Jews?

many words in the dark
mouth stitched shut
full of fire

Huge photographs of sleeping men
in a park. One in a jalabiyyah,
his face covered with a scarf.

Magritte painting:
his drowned mother, her veil
choking her


I lose my breath

scan yourself
the way you speak
how you take up space

Only ash remains.

Judith Shaw writes poetry and fiction and is also a painter/printmaker. She comes from a Jewish family, with relations from the USA to Vietnam. After a year living and working in Iceland she’s now settled in St Leonards-on-Sea. She works as a dyslexia specialist and a Human Givens therapist.

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