When People Tell Me I’m “Still the Same Person”’

by Reyzl Grace

I watched the shoreline pushing back the ice for weeks
until the last knotted muscles of the lake broke free
and it smiled in silver glimmers beneath the pier,
took cast-off leaves in quickened fingers to adorn its cheeks,
and was happy.

Someone will say it is the same lake
because they love joy less than they hate surprises
and don't feel the difference when the light strikes the bottom.

©Reyzl Grace, 2022

This poem was longlisted as part of the Spectrum: Poetry Celebrating Identity project. Click here to find out more about the project, and other poems on the longlist here.


The concept of identity – be it class, gender, sexuality, national, institutional, or anything else we define ourselves by – has gone through radical change over the past half-century, and the idea of definition by binary oppositions is no longer as relevant as it once was.

Spectrum is a poetry anthology that seeks to amplify marginalised voices, and to celebrate the great diversity and rich variation in the identities of people from around the world and from a huge cross-section of walks of life.

Click here for the anthology of shortlisted poems.