Susan Wigmore

It was a shock to find membership of the club was not automatic: she’d put in the time, done the hard labour; it was natural, surely. She wore its livery nonetheless—the wrap-dresses, button-down shirts, its crossovers and flaps—in remembrance of the lightness of dreams, before life sank into its short, shallow grooves. Other mums draped themselves in milky muslin, like da Vinci Madonnas, as babies rested in the crooks of arms. But she had no words of explanation for the bottle in her hand, and nothing could conceal that red, scooped-out space beneath her ribs where failure thrived.

About the author: Susan Wigmore retired from teaching in 2018, and completed the Undergraduate Diploma in Creative Writing at the University of Oxford in 2020. Her fiction has been long and shortlisted for prizes, including The Daily Telegraph Short Story Competition, and the Reflex, Cambridge, and Oxford Flash Fiction Competitions, with pieces to be published in their respective anthologies. In July 2021, she won inclusion in the 2021 Fractured Lit Anthology. She has had poetry published in Raceme and Angled by the Flood, a SciPo (Oxford) publication exploring the creative common ground between science and poetry.