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In a lyrical fashion: model Wilson Oryema on writing poetry for this season


A favourite of labels from Stella McCartney to Grace Wales Bonner, the 25-year-old filmmaker, poet and environmental campaigner reflects on the change of the season

  • Read more from the spring/summer 2019 edition of The Fashion, our biannual fashion supplement

Wilson Oryema is a model and a poet. His first book, Wait, came out at the end of 2017, a year in which he also appeared in shows for Maison Margiela and A-Cold-Wall*. Now a favourite of fashion brands ranging from Stella McCartney to Grace Wales Bonner, the former charity administrator says he started writing poetry as “an interesting way to communicate my ideas on consumption and the way it affects human behaviour and the environment”, and that he is influenced by William Blake and Nayyirah Waheed. And how would he describe his style – in words and clothes? “Functional but fluid,” he says.

Oryema, who is 25, has all the characteristics of the Gen Z demographic. The Londoner is deeply concerned with sustainability and able to multitask between a bewildering range of things. As well as poetry and modelling, he makes short films and campaigns on environmental issues. “I find balance by choosing to prioritise what’s more important for me and my intentions,” he says. For this poem, written exclusively for The Fashion, Oryema looks at the change of season, the arrival of spring and the impact that has on both outlook and outfit.

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