w i n t e r  w o r d s 

For Anthroɐlay's last project of 2023, we challenged our talented Associate Artists to write us a poem, drawing inspiration from the Winter season. 

Whatever you're up too, we hope these scribbles bring you some creative warmth to lighten up these dark, chilly days. 

Big up and big thanks to our wonderful Associates, you can find their poems below...

Baby, it's cold. by Joe Tapper

Light clocks out early to beat the traffic and darkness starts the grind.

Up they rise, 4pm, the dead. To haunt for longer. My feet are cold.

The rusty turbine creaks, aches, stutters and breaks without the flow.

Don’t remind me. There are times the chill itself is cause for wonder—

fresh mornings striking noses with sharp-gasp reminders of aliveness,

when children fall with snow and land in spaces made for them.

Those of us whose upper lips grow further stiff at frosty looks

know winter as a violent lack. I tear inside and oh,

it’s warm. The embers render full embrace and my clamped jaw thaws.

The dressing gown and evening coffee offer knowing nods as I bathe

in double-glazing, coat shunned in casual un-covering, the corner

of a blanket lifted like a spirit calmly daring rest.

What luck. Coming face to glacial face removes all question

and moves us in double-oared strokes towards huddling.

(in a parallel universe, where the doctor is also santa) by Poet the Jules

(in a parallel universe where the doctor is also santa)

i sit on david tennant's lap and tell him i want

my own TARDIS for christmas/

he’d understand because he also has two hearts

and friends who don’t stick around

i’d watch sunsets on jupiter/ put a tree up on mars,

boogie with microorganisms/ name a few stars/ i’d sit

on the edge of the universe staring into the dark/

where nothing has happened yet

there is a spark in my snowglobe existence/

a trillion light years away where our house was/

it's our last christmas dinner/ i’m at the window

from the outside looking in/ even with my own

time space machine/ i want to live it all again

HYN, NBD by Jaskaran Kaur Sahota

Reborn again 

At midnight

Every night.


The precipice of

Everything & nothing 

Every dawn. 

Flamboyant flames

Pink skies 

Every bright. 

New Year,

New Me

Every day.

Bodies Aligned (or, Free Palestine) by Kylo the Kid

Close your eyes, take off your shoes, your jewellery, the things that pierce your skin, and lay

naked in the sand. Feel your heartbeat to bone in your chest, the ebbs and flows of the light

that is called life, the life of your body. Touch it, but gently, for it is fragile, as it is the body of

your siblings. Your siblings of the rubble.

For they are you.

Wrapped up in flesh and blood and joys and dreams, that lay muddy now, under blotted skies

and twisted lead. A loss so deep, there can be no breath, for all that you have ever known has

gone, accept…

touch gently, for our bodies stretch across space and time, and blood and bullets, we lay

naked in the sand.

Do you feel it? Do you feel them? Your siblings of the rubble.

You do not need the things you think you need; you only need the things we share.

Hold them, as you hold yourself, fight for them, as they’d fight for you,

and bare witness,

to your siblings of the rubble

Hot Chocolate and Sympathy by Josh Anderson-Grey 

In the corner of the café, I let out a sigh

As I gaze out the window, looking up at the sky.

The hot chocolate before me is getting cold in my mug.

Lord, I need someone to give me a hug…!

Going to Costa would have cost a lot,

But this cheap, lukewarm stuff will not hit the spot.

I resign myself to spend the evening alone,

Then in march my colleagues: Jez, Gary and Tone.

They say, “Kwame, we’re sorry about your wife.

We loved Yetunde; she was always high on life.

We know today was her birthday. Say the word, and we’ll go,

But you need to know that we’re here for you, bro.”

The lads are in my corner, showing me brotherly love

Like angels in disguise, sent from above…

Fleeting and beautiful things by Yasmin Beck 

leaves turning auburn and yellow and brown

the sun melting through clouds

pavements glittering, tenderly embraced by frost

cold kisses kindled by warmth of breath

champagne diamonds floating in glass

watching you laugh with your whole heart

holding your hand as your wonder paints the sky

dancing with you in the kitchen

with mouthfuls of love and inspiration

with passing scents of lavender and red wine.

Flowers will bloom again in spring.