The Mint Lounge, Manchester, December 2018

Elizabeth Gibson

My first time properly clubbing, this so-nearly-Christmas
night and morning. The place, like its name, is tingling
and mysterious and sweet, the ease of 80s and 90s hits, 
glass bothering feet, lights swirling jade and creamy pink 
as I learn and learn, between maybe one and four AM, 
to move and bop with my very new colleagues, friends soon.
How fresh and gorgeous it feels to be wearing the men’s suit 
I bought yesterday, how my red shirt hugs and frames me,
how my silver starfish necklace gives a little away of me,
of a life spent floating and flailing from world to world,
of my refusal to hide my squidgy, salty glow from anyone.
I swagger for a photo against the wood of the cloakroom,
beaming with my newly-short hair, before leaping to catch 
“A Little Respect” and “Livin’ on a Prayer”. I’ve got this.

Elizabeth Gibson is a Manchester-based poet and linguist whose work explores body image, mental health, queerness, nature and folklore. She was a winner at the 2017 Northern Writers’ Awards and her work has previously appeared in Severine404 InkAtriumConfingoInk, Sweat & TearsLitroPopshotStrix and the Mancunian Ways anthology. Find her on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.