Beyond Paradise Poetry by Lesbians and Gay Men

Beyond Paradise was Commonword’s third anthology of LGBT+ writing.

Memories and fantasies mingle with the excitement – and traumas – of real relationships which range from romance in exotic settings to more intimate moments shared between lovers. This lively poetry from twenty lesbian and gay writers encompasses an impressive range of styles and situations.

‘Touching and real accounts of being in love and losing it’ – Tallulah Howarth, archive volunteer

Just Friends

I say
I’ve got over     you when
I’ve slipperysoaped your skin     found
your mouth in a stream of water      watched
the bubbling well between our four breasts

when we say we have dried each other’s thighs
and you say                 that’s far enough
and I throw down the towel     and suddenly
we’re kissing             and throwing
fire down each other’s throats

I say
I’ve got over you      because
I can happily be with you     loving
the light way our limbs plait
themselves together on the sofa
like cats     in front of my fire     as we talk
for hours     forgetting
to eat       until
it’s so late we decide to share
my bed with our T-shirts
on    and tampons in    still

and all night it seems
I dream of you
in your fine new house
as I spill shoeboxes

of my past
on your floor
crying with frustration

Cora Greenhill


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Publication date: 1990
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