‘Overflow’ by Zoe Wright

Creative Collections

Today we have a super talented first year student, Zoe Wright providing us with both a poem supported by her own photography. Studying Environmental Science at the University of Aberdeen she writes a lot of nature based poetry, but the majority of her poems deal with spiritual, self-reflection, mental health and holistic topics. She is also an avid photographer which comes in handy to help to illustrate and document her poems visually. She was always highly commended in school for her artistic work (Writing, art, photography and film-making).

‘Overflow’

Body like a shaky line,

Trickles on the flat,

Flowing ever so slowly,

To a short demise.

The never ending expanse mirrored;

Two worlds collide.

And onto below she did cry upon

Her body cold.

Overflow, overflow,

Into the great green sky,

Cut into the earth,

And open up wide

To spill out shiny seeds,

That dig deep down.

So you open up,

Deep and wide.

Now look back up at the sky,

And gaze into your lover’s eyes,

Look where you’ve come from dear.

And look, where you are now.

ZW: This poem displays the symbiotic relationship between a stream and the sky. The sky being a never-ending source of rain/life for the stream. While the stream is trapped by its own body, devoid of rain and life. It is the interaction between the two that allows the stream to expand into a strong forceful river that feeds into the hydrological cycle (a working society), feeding that expansive source in the sky.

Of course the personification of the two, leads to its personal inspiration of me as a person. Someone who was sunken and depressed for most of my life until I self-reflected (seen in the mirroring in the sky on the surface of the water), and saw within me my own potential. This symbiotic relationship seen in the poem isn’t necessarily about an external source feeding and nurturing another source to health, but more about learning your own capabilities and using the hidden talent within yourself to grow and expand as a person (or as a river). This is also demonstrated with the two sources seen as both female lovers, with femininity being nurturing and loving. This is left up to interpretation to the reader, for some this lesbian dynamic can be represented within themselves as they may see themselves as I, nurturing one’s own self through growth, or readers can choose to interpret the relationship as an external partner, if they view their growth as being majorly responsible from a romantic, platonic or queer-platonic relationship.

This subjectivity has also made me reluctant to upload an image to accompany this poem as I find an important part of this piece, is how the reader perceives the landscape. I acknowledged that every person reading, may in their head picture their own body of water or even sky to how they feel about where they were before they grew, and what or where they are now. (e.g. a deep cut stream in the upper course of a river turning into a deep flat lower course body of water, or a lake or spring etc. With the sky varying from extremely overcast to bright skies depending where they view themselves on their journey). But nevertheless, I will submit some photos for viewing.

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