Seven billion people,

It’s a mind-blowing number.


Human number 672

Sits opposite me on the train,

Hair the colour of pomegranate

Seeds like jewels when the light

Dances at the right angle.


She sings of poetry,

How it will change the world.


Her friend, human number 2091

Talks politics and world peace,

I imagine them at protests

Youthful fire against bitter winds.


Human number 672 pulls out

An anthology I recognise,

We exchange excited words

She tells me of her travels

Reading poetry to

Wide-eyed strangers.


My stop draws near

I exit through the doors

Onto the platform

Fingers itching, head spinning.

Letters to words to lines of poems

Heavy in my chest

Desperate to kiss the pages

To change the world

To revolutionise


Seven, billion, people.


The past does not place a

Noose around our necks,

History does not repeat itself

If human number 672 and

2091 and 76 and 812 and 108

Refuse to allow it.


By Nabeela