Bed is a Ship

by Georgina Bruce

Bed is a ship that sails through the night, on inky indigo waters; through silver surf, curlicued and shining. There are no lights, no lanterns, only burning cigarettes: small hot golden warnings that can be seen for miles. (I never smoke in the daytime.) The bed is haunted by the ghosts of slaves, who mutiny all night long against the piratical captain. We are monstered by giant squid, with their blindly thrashing tentacles, and fish with legs and teeth, who cling onto the headboard and crawl onto the sheets, dripping seaweed. I fight back as best I can, with whatever comes to hand, while the slaves chant, heave ho and away, as they row me ashore, or run me aground in morning’s rocky harbours.


Georgina Bruce is the bearded lady.