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Elizabeth Train-Brown Poetry

she wears chaos like Dior

by Elizabeth Train-Brown

I’ve got my hands all over her
in the train toilet
en route to Manchester Piccadilly
and she’s alive like static
under my fingers
whispering in tongues
gulping down the sweat in the air.

when we set off the fireworks
by Lancaster canal
she ground her thumb into gunpowder
painted it on her cheeks,
her white moth eyes
chasing the Catherine wheels
spinning under the bridge on the M55.

she pulled me onto the 23:33 from Preston
with a hand around the back of my neck
told me,
I might not ruin your life
but you’ll excuse me if I certainly try.


we were walking back from theirs
butterflies in our bellies
(that might’ve just been the vodka red bulls)
and my feet were singing on the air
because I could still taste his lips on mine
could still feel his hands on my hips
fingers dancing through my hair.

we were walking back home
in the rain in the dark
and I sat down in the road

to break.

the others watched me
crumble on wet tarmac
tear the air apart
chest heaving

eyes burning

they’ve never seen destruction
quite like this
never knew sobs could rip the night sky
curdle the stars
spill into the street like oil in a storm

and they don’t know
why I keep whispering your name

they don’t know
because I’m 150 miles away
from where you died
and no one here
pours an extra vodka red bull
and leaves it untouched on the table.


see before you,
an hysteric.
call me Blanche
call me mum
call me the name
of your first lover
it doesn’t matter
because I will be
the thing you dream
of tonight.
I am the future
the night
the darkest
of your delights
and tomorrow
you won’t remember
the colour of my

I buried my heart at a crossroad

you have her eyes
like wine
like chaos.
you probably have her mouth
but I can’t concentrate
long enough
when you start giggling
against my collarbone –
all I can think of
is how your breath feels
skating over my chest
as you tell me about
how sirens spring
from the women
who throw themselves
off cliffs
how vampires are the women
who drink blood
between the legs of


Elizabeth Train-Brown (she/they) is a circus performer and award-winning journalist, studying Creative Writing at Lancaster University. She is Poetry & Prose Editor for TL Publishing, Developmental Editor for Flash Literary Journal, Poetry Reader at Bandit Fiction, and Poetry Staff Writer at Saturdaze Magazine. She won the 2020 Literary Lancashire Award, came highly commended in the 2021 Erbacce Prize, listed under Best Submissions in the 2021 SLF Young Poets Prize, and has been published over 30 times. She can be found online at bethtrainbrown.journoportfolio.com and instagram.com/choo_choo42.

The Writing Disorder is a quarterly literary journal. We publish exceptional new works of fiction, poetry, nonfiction and art. We also feature interviews with writers and artists, as well as reviews.



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