First of the Last Chances Paperback – 28 Mar 2003
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Her range is astonishing. Most readers will come away having been changed or delighted. -- The Daily Telegraph
Moves through minefields of emotion with instinctive grace. -- Sian Hughes, the Times Education Supplement
One of the best rhyming poets in the business -- The Bookseller
Shall I put it in capitals? SOPHIE HANNAH IS A GENIUS -- John Whitworth, Poetry Review
The Brightest young star in British Poetry -- Judith Palmer, The Independent
Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
My husband doesnt want to hold the plastic pelvis model.
He tells the other husbands that its bound to be a doddle.
He thinks the role of classes is to teach, not mollycoddle.
Hell go so far, but not an inch beyond.
My husband is afraid of meeting women called Magenta,
Of sharing wholesome snacks outside the Early Learning Centre,
Of any exercise thats an incontinence preventor.
Hes friendly but determined not to bond.
My husband listens to my fear, tells me to overcome it.
Changes the subject to the Davos Economic Summit,
Decides that if theres pain hell simply ask the nurse to numb it.
He says he doesnt think it sounds that bad.
My husband mocks the books with their advice about nutrition,
He shocks the other couples in the coffee intermission
By saying Ziggy Marley seems in pretty good condition
Despite the smoking habits of his dad.
My husband doesnt care if Im a leaner or a squatter,
Says pregnancy is no excuse for reading Harry Potter
He isnt keen on Stephanie or Amos or Carlotta.
Leave it to him; he named our latest car.
On Fathers Day my husband gets a card hes not expecting.
I say its from the baby, with a little redirecting.
He doesnt blame my hormones or insist that Im projecting.
He tells me hes the father of a star.
Ideally your floors should not be carpeted but tiled
A brightly coloured nursery will stimulate your child.
Do not eat soft-boiled eggs, smoke crack, fellate infected men
But tell your partner how you fell (see diagram, page ten).
Youre bored and restless? Now is not the time to fly to China
Or let friends with litter trays blow air up your vagina.
Make sure your fitness trainer is aware of your condition.
Remember, you must check your teeth and call that electrician
And every tune you raise a glass or lift a fork, please think
Is this the very best thing for your child to eat or drink?
Once-a-month treats - a slice of cake - will not do any harm
But dont lick lambing ewes or stick syringes in your arm.
Quite often pregnancies go wrong, and when they do, thats sad.
It sometimes happens if youre stressed or pregnant by your dad
But eat your folic acid and next time a thin blue line
Appears, relax. Think positive. Most likely youll be fine.
Try not to feel too daunted by this barrage of advice.
It really doesnt matter if you slip up once or twice -
Eat the wrong cheese, go on the game. Its not all doom and gloom:
Never again will baby be as safe as in your womb.
Top customer reviews
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on 4 June 2004
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
It's as rare as hen's teeth to find poetry that actually rhymes being critically praised these days. A friend sent me a poem by Sophie Hannah, and on reading itI wanted to find out more, so bought this volume. It's great - universal themes explored in a sensitive and new way, with wit and language that is understandable and occasionally under-stated. I read somewhere that a lot of people don't touch poetry these days because poetry doesn't touch them, which it true when you look at some of the inaccessible tosh that's around. But Sophie Hannah's work cuts through all that - well worth a read.
on 27 March 2003
Sophie Hannah goes from strength to strength. These poems are hilarious as well as being very memorable and evocative. Hannah writes about all sorts of different everyday situations that are very recognisable, but also adds a touch of comic genuis that makes her work really come to life.