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"How Close His Mouth" by Emily White

Twenty-two minutes of music.

I put the phone to one side and open the laptop.

I'm in bed, a place for handling numbers.

Patience slips over my shoulders.

The agents voice is there now

searching my list of standing orders

I lean back in the pillows

and close my eyes.

I could fall asleep here.

Dog snores in her basket.

The six thirty comedy winds up

Sinking back the cotton is cool

—he breathes out— I hear how close his mouth

has been to the mic all this time, holding

back air as he searched and now he asks;

Can I put you on hold?

Trombonist Emily White has been writing since studying in creative writing at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education graduating in 2021. A member of Huntly Writers she won the Brian Nisbet poetry prize, had short stories published in Insights (Claret Press,) Anthology (Parracombe Prize) and was shortlisted for the Wells Literary Festival Short Story Competition. Her poem; Where will the Owls Go?, was published in The Phare and her poem Pulchra Es will be performed at Dartington International Festival 2023.

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