I’ve lost it. (I have it) I don’t know where it has gone. At least I know I’ve lost it, Maybe that means I can find it again Before it’s too late. (And it will be soon) He searches his mind For where he put it. (With the pictures of his daughter as a child) […]
The little girl’s breath has escaped at last. (The wind swallowed it) She stops in her tracks, Her face aghast. I’ve taken it away, the wind whispers If you want it back, You’ll have to go and quest, For I have already blown Your breath to the west. The girl hears the wind And decides […]
he has gone too deep this time for twelve years old. his breath escapes him in a pale green bubble that shivers and shimmers, the size of his fist. although his mouth opens wide-wide-wide, sea fills his lungs. the bubble floats on. (a shoal of tiny fish flick by, nudging the sphere between quicksilver bodies. […]
It seems I’ve misplaced my little sister. Oh it is nothing – just a sister – a child like any other. (Does my older sister love me? One can never be sure.) My sister has our mother’s eyes and lashes that lick the loops of her cheekbones, just like Grandmother’s. But otherwise, just another child. […]
The fishing boat dropped anchor into the clouds, balanced precariously on a skyscraper’s edge and rumbling a fog horn roar for help, he sang of such sweet false promises: Mighty Seas, wash away my sins! Oh sea, come visit me at night! (a giant had drank it) and I will never live for want of […]
the yellowing glue in the cardboard spine – inches of vertebrae traversed by typography – holds together a sepulchre of pages where milky wrists laid thoughts to rest far too early – and i hesitate, knowing i am only a graverobber
Huddled under a single shelter they Wonder if this bus will be theirs If the rain will stop or if There will be a metro left at the station Did they lock the front door or leave It on the latch Will they be late or did they pick up their lunch Too late now […]
Two tower blocks are women Brushing their hair that reaches the ground, Turning around so the strands Spool down from the balconies and Their faces are hidden.
Alabaster light. A cold-fixing Frost roots leaf To leaf; welds its chill In each vein. No thaw. A raw Thrown glassy stare From window panes. One half- Breath of air And I The plum tree With my mouthful of stones.
A sketch in chalk, stilled and blanketed. Undulation of pallor, rippled by the indecision of lungs.
the sky opens up, yawns, spits out the sun, spews light like skimmed stones, delicate as elephant’s breath
She took a glug Of bleach. Exhaled as Hell’s treacle drooled like honey Down her throat. Her vomit And coughs And cries Were clean.
The dead, black traffic Like slanting points of grey air Cut down the field’s edge. Old, like hands, tender As the old tooth of sorrow. You noticed again.
On this dark November night: Flaming stallions, Scorching steeds ignite the heavens With their fiery feud.
The ascent of the glaring, blazing sun; Soldiers marching on.
Pressed leather hands He stares, lost Repairing thin soles
Tiny five pointed pennant Unfurling on the flag post fence warning us loss is dangerous.
Rush hour: sunlit Heads shift halos In the specks of dust.
When it finally happened all I could picture was a pebble’s impact in a bowl of flour and the circle of dust rising. I took us into the chill black, five toy-like fingers wrapped around my thumb, tight as bacon, and you asked ‘Why don’t they make any sound?’ I steamed out some words concerning […]
Now you’re back observing our cobweb constellations, Helping me collect the stars’ letters of resignation. Since you’ve returned from the Andromeda galaxy, Have you been suffering from start dust deficiency? Remember when we observed, with the lonely pools of pale lamplight, The colour spectrum refracted into a pinprick against the night. There’s a secret message, […]
He sweeps his instrument in a pendulum motion Over his fresh canvas The Pioneer’s tool trails and bequeaths Inky black, smooth as fine silk Glossy and polished like a feather of a crow He dabs lapis lazuli, raw and impure Accompanied by a symphony Of burnt roses with a magnificent glow And intense luminosity He […]
I knew a boy once, he used to take me out, not to the picture-house, not dancing nor to hear a waistcoated man play jazz and tip me a wink over his trumpet (You with this lady? You a lucky guy, man) Nothing I’d have wanted to do, he liked to stargaze to laugh at […]
Starlight: Shards of light stuck into our pin-cushion globe Left there by some forgetful god still sewing the glowing threads through the black velvet. Elongated intergalactic trains rushing in to Earth, The first and final station: all photons out! Lofty towers of energy collapsing at the speed of light, Their decay spanning a billion years […]
I am stardust. In me linger the molecules, the atoms Couriered across the galaxy in a black carriage With a wake of spiralling ice To reach no home for centuries, no warm planetary parking spot Which my elements have pierced, ravaged and seeded. In me linger the molecules, the atoms Broken apart by internecine, incandescent […]
Based on ‘Stop all the Clocks’ by W.H. Auden Stop the traffic lights, turn off the iPhone, Stop the labradoodle from barking with a plastic bone. Silence the nightclubs and with a bass drum, Bring out the flags, let the tears come. Let keyboards tap, give an ache to every head, Scribbling on facebook the […]
Their chatter, flashes and flickers of envy she moved, flushed in all her young beauty the illusion would convict her. she awoke alone transient as lightening Hazy sunrise in August brimming in the vigour of youth like red hot pokers under the sky all dried away to nothing. She did not see and laughed heartily […]
From ‘Autumn’ by T. Hood I saw old landlord in the misty gloaming Stand shadowless like science, listening To science, for no lonely radio would sing Into his hollow beer from ceilings forlorn, Nor lowly shopping bag nor solitary pub;- Shaking his languid crocs all dewy bright With tangled briefcases that fell by twilight, Pearling […]
Before you go to sleep, call me beautiful but don’t ask why I pretend not to hear. Won’t hear. Too much squeeze lemons upon the curves of your eyeballs and stay with me downsize yourself to fit like puzzles. To fill. But then again, you better not let your Macbook forgets about codes and graphics. […]
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man. Painting suggests James Joyce’s bizarre fixation with Wilde’s ‘Dorian Gray’. The Catcher in the Rye. Cricket player’s remains discovered in J.D. Salinger family bakery. Put Out More Flags. Modest Evelyn Waugh commemoration enrages author’s fans. Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. Tabby stuck on Desire replica […]
in storms, i’m sure rain shows off, pirouetting down bleeding graffiti for the trapped audience half-under the shuddering bus shelter. it begins to get into my eyes, smudging the swirling faces that pass by me into a humdrum blur, like shredded modern art . men shout out from car windows; their words melting into the […]
The sun Was like a flashing sword That ran down my veil Of tears The sun Was a red-hot breath Of fire, splitting from My whole being I tightened the trigger I felt the sweat The sun destroyed the balance Of the beach I’d been happy The bullets sank, leaving a mark Like giving four […]
Midnight: strange meeting, teachers dead. The juror, the secret keeper sworn to silence Iron council “tell me no lies”. Scared to death- a wanted man, what I was the wrong man; a suitable boy. Chasing faces before I die, Looking for JJ the love of my life the fool’s girl, stargirl. No time for goodbyes, […]
Tom’s Midnight Garden; The Secret Garden, Birds, Beasts (and Relatives), Born Free, The Forgotten Garden, Garden of Beasts, Garden of Shadows, The Time Garden, For All Time, Out Of Time, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, The Other Side Of Midnight, Goodnight Mr Tom, Mr Midnight,
Storm for London, sunshine for Lyon Odds staked against summer party Potential faint drizzle in Sarawak an opening to a wet week Your umbrella might see better day Heavy rainfall on Pekanbaru Citizen prepares generator Snow will fall on New Zealand, Singapore partly cloudy Designers suggest sunglasses will fall out of trend Dry week for […]
That time was the time I spoke out, the hidden hand felt less honest, so ridiculous and tender,yes, false. I kiss each law and bruise the perfectly white years; astounded. ( Derived from Stephen Dunn’s ‘Each from Different Heights’ )
Just listen; birdsong. A gathering light, half of a yellow sun; a thousand splendid suns. Promise me the singing; the harsh cry of the heron Before the dark; after the dawn; one day; elsewhere. Inkheart. Just one look; love walked in. The fault in our stars sing you home before I go to sleep. Handle […]
Before I wake, Will Grayson… Will Grayson! The Night Circus, candyfloss, Goodnight, my angel. My dear, I wanted to tell you The name of the wind: Silence. I remember passion, rapture… Torment. Still, she haunts me. Just listen, remember me? What if the final days… When she danced across the nightingale floor Looking for Alaska, […]
Alice left wonderland, People brag about getting bad grades, Everybody likes you – Nobody likes me. When we destroy something It’s always my fault, I just did what I did – I need a title. I put myself through this – Anybody would say that She chose that line out of all the lines, You […]
Farewell, my lovely – Pearls are a nuisance of human bondage. Beloved, never let me go walking on broken glass; to the lighthouse. Love – In the time of Cholera, kiss Kiss the beautiful, and the damned kiss the dust. Take a girl like you, farewell (My lovely, we are still married) to the lighthouse, […]
after Sylvia Plath A Sestina for the Final Frontier Rocketeer, the physicists once wondered how you Came to be lying on the rocky ground above the heavens Sculpted in aluminium, under the eye Of chirping stars and a tropical moon, Set in intricate wilderness of grey Dome-shaped holes, like elephant prints, and tribes Of monstrous […]
there she was, incomprehensible, one of the six-inch guns; a little white smoke a tiny projectile Nothing could happen. a touch of insanity lugubrious drollery assuring me earnestly her letters were dying of fever the merry dance of death still and earthly overheated formless as if Nature herself tried to ward off intruders; death in […]
The honey of promises: wings (to an infant, to the elderly, to the search for serendipity, to the idea of a home), bars (to a minor, to the convict, to the mother of five, to the father of a gun), flowers (to valentines, to vases, to the gravestones of the unknown, to the description of […]
Teeth like ancient tombstones; her grin was wide and quant Her eyes were not remarkable but light and green and faint Her skin was freckled, her cheeks pockmarked Her words could sparkle, shone in the dark Well I met her at a party, a story quite cliché Slurped my drink and told me […]
You made me lowered, When you splayed your hands to cut the light And showed me how to trace the night – And I made my paper gods. The jagged bottle, shackles, ashes: Candles and dust Strings coiled with rust. I remember you played for me And the slits of your words Beat time, your […]
The wind here blows strongly, The sky here is grey. I walk outside, in the bitter cold, While people walk away. Through the winter, I wait for you. Through the winter, I still love you. The dust falls like snowflakes, The sky falls like sleet. I close my eyes and draw my dreams, […]
It was a twenty minute countdown To the time when school should end Teachers farewelled students Classmates said goodbye to friends Her laugh was easy Her smile was true Her eyes were shining Picture of youth She walked right past the staff room Humming as she went Thinking of the holiday And the […]
Lights go on; or shall I say not any lights but candles, or shall I say not any candles, but those eyes; so as to say that when I’ve turned my cheek away, would you turn yours in supple vow? Torrential as the markings that our windowsill has livered, livened by the blanks the meeting […]
When he painted my eyes, he told me I could use them to look out at a future age, while I looked out of the window at the crowded streets I was too ‘refined’ to run through when I was young. He said I could watch the eras shed their skins, and I longed to […]
The keepsake was for her to hang; The opal-eyed countess. For riches, for your family’s name, She was pledged an ivory dress. In company the whispers carry, Rumours sinew, must be maimed- How better by two gilded bands, Your grudging heart in callow hands. To be ordained in her collection, Yearning must ensnare her soul. […]
My eyes roamed my face Well I say my face, I could see my eyes, Their dull, grey colour had been translated by the artist’s hand No longer matt, they sparkled out of the frame, And my cheeks were alight with a soft glow I had never seen on my own skin. I reached out […]
My name shall not be known. I shall come into the studio, Dejected As the moon swaying slow in the night- Breeze ruffling skirt hems and loose leaves. I will instruct the painter, “Paint me as I am”. Me: lone and ordinary, Me with my inadequacies. Even the bleakness enfolded In my eyelids the humble […]
i. His cheeks have wine spilling across them (or maybe I am back at last night watching the red douse my tablecloth, which I could have saved, perhaps, but the sight was too beautiful). ii. Every inhale makes my work more different (they never told me how you needed to contend with the act of […]
Rambling fool. He is nothing but that, boy; A genius idiot with an expensive quill And too much time and too little ink On his hands. See the way he idles on those cushions, With his perfectly manicured hands In angles coiffed meticulously In front of a looking-glass, Whilst his stomach practises Physical rhetoric in […]
“I didn’t like him when I first saw him All too preppy, all too clean, All too “teenage student’s dream”. I didn’t trust his quirky socks Or the way he’d try to shock With tales of his life, aged seventeen. I did like his favourite book; it’s Peter Pan And he’ll always stop class to […]
SCENE SIX. INT. IVORY SLEAK RESTAURANT. EVENING. LARRY, 29, is that Jewish guy who thinks he’s black. Tupac is his idol. Opposite him is, HONEY, 21. She’s the Sunday school type; long dress but hair that looks like its shampooed with crack; its mighty big. They are sitting in the far corner, on love seats. […]
Thank you very much for coming here today, I must say you’re looking well. Not tired for the time of year, Perhaps you’ve lost some weight? Good Heavens! Have mince pie prices really Risen by quite so much? And what a shame, I do recall They are your favourite food. I hope your journey wasn’t […]
Kick kick kick. Kick. Do you like the 183 Panamerican Airlines crash from New York to Gran Canaria? Was it a good plane crash? Would you have liked to be in that air crash? Was it good? Was it good, was it, did you like that Panam crash? Oh cock. (Said proudly, placed on the […]
Gareth, in his late forties, a large but clearly mild-mannered Yorkshireman. He sits in a worn armchair, nursing a cup of tea. Don’t do much these days. Doesn’t bother me. Got myself a nice little soundtrack to the way of things, you know -television, traffic, usual talk, casual, small. Keep seeing the sun glance in […]
THE BOY’S ROOM. The Boy is crouched on his knees, rocking. He rocks to the murmured, barely audible rhythm: ‘Make it stop. Make it stop.’ His mutterings gradually fade, and when he falls silent, he raises his head, eyes wild, motionless. BOY In the night. This is what I saw. A man, he says ‘Where is She.’ Stone […]
You don’t think I remember but I do. Oh boy, do I remember. Your lips, like kissing a cyst. Wet and oily, like a kiss from A fisherman. It was your plan Wasn’t it, to get me drunk? And wasn’t it you who murmured My arse was like two guard cells Round a stoma? Well, […]
The prodigal leaves return to me, Rewind into the breasts of a rain-tree. Repose. I’m an amnesiac –Malacca, Malaga; Oh, what’s in a word? Not to say I am forgetful. I liked cinnamon. I loved a boy once. He was brown and wore a sarong. Lived in a stilt-house by the rocking-chair sea. He proffered a […]
And are you a king’s daughter? I must admit this is not so rather I am the daughter of trees and broad Virginia valley, of white-trimmed water and the skins of deer. Of late, I am a daughter of the Lord, my lady baptised in Jamestown these three years ago and in this at least […]
No reason to think of you in Sydney today, Because we’d never talked about opera. Except that maybe you were right— Red doesn’t do much for me. I’d spend my next question on you, But you know how the alcohol can be. Daydreams can’t be predestined anyway, Just like no one drops a star by […]
I’m trying to overcome random bouts of stinginess. But when I offered jewellery, you casually mentioned that: “Men who don’t buy perfume don’t love their wives.” A magazine said so. Huffing and puffing, I roar our out of sight, to the toy section, hands cold in sweat but maybe warming to this “buying presents” for […]
The pool pulled through seven hollows scooped in limestone, emptied in a single channel fluting through a dark walled gorge. Green and clear, the pool exhaled in glacier breath: a chill was on the place. We left the pool and in an hour came to a castle sticking like a thumb out of the ground.
If we talk, back home it is always in double meaning Words flung in the air simply to fill the gaps flung up like discarded clothing, sampling the air for a brighter consistency. We miss more than the humidity notices the starkness of each breath. My blisters stain me with reality, but today I walked […]
We dance all night, or thereabouts, And sing ourselves to sleep beside the pier. The morning air, sea-chilled, invites us to Remember how the music seemed so loud And how the somewhat overbearing Prince of Thebes Was floating round the room in skinny jeans.
Suddenly, the blazing sun rises to greet the Spanish dawn with blinding light. Terracotta rooftops burn like flames in the claustrophobic countryside, and villa walls pulse with heat like radiators. Far off, a hot hound howls, inspired by the midday heat. A squadron of feathered menace revolves up high in planetary-like motion. Wooden sentinels snake […]
A young Hawaiian mountain of a man Taught me to read his whole life on his skin; With how he loved his wife marked on his breast, His family tree branched out from hip to shin – As if the native blood that floods his veins Had flared in navy ink from toe to chin […]
The big smoke has always been around Its fingers the veins running through our wrists Bluer and firmer as we pranced across the stage like Gods Its voice this summer was sweeter than honey And we could resist no longer A train four hours and we had escaped this place’s grey-green discolouration The sun held […]
There is nothing Great about Yarmouth where The Empire’s best is a briny comic and silvered palmists tell of future harms or flog tin charms from crumpled crimson booths. a child gives a mole a mortal TWACK! and tired neon lights begin to blink. Oiled paper blows like tumbleweed behind the peeling whitewashed greyhound track. […]
Dear Reader As I am sure you are aware A hot summer here is truly rare So allow me to show you A more favourable view… The sea a shade of turquoise Sand a murky grey Silent except for angry ones Of cicadas as they yell for attention Whitewashed houses contrast The bright blue of […]
You shed onto me; you Moulted yesterday, you Moulted today, and you’re going to moult Tomorrow — Dandruff, hair, sly bits of spittle and All. Thin carrot slices of your time shed too onto Me; And now what you hold in your Hand is a rubbery old Stump of shrivelled root With no flavour. Shed […]
The only sound is the radio: You and Yours Seeping past the empty beer bottles in the kitchen To rise through the empty house. Home alone, Every room is a museum piece. Do Not Touch. There is something very basic here, very old, Some instinct of childhood – or a whisper Of your granddad’s funeral […]
You phoned me at 3:23 AM, told me the time was a palindrome, asked if I wanted to go shopping for secrets and sea breeze – I hung up. You hummed a song I’d never heard as we wandered dream-streaked streets, talked about how the rain tasted said “I just want to pick up everything […]
You kept a diary, wrote subliminal messages to your future self, in the back pages. A cloud crossed the window and suddenly your room was dark and curved on itself, like a wave frozen before it can fall, except, the waves never fall on your beach. And you will never be hungry. And the rubbish […]
On your birthday, I go into the garden with the words of a child tied with white ribbon. This is symbolic, probably. Still, it makes sense, since these are all that’s left of her body, and here I am, burning the evidence of her existence. Yes, I am here. I could still hold her little […]
My skin is the sky, but I’m tearing apart at the seams; a plane leaves it’s mark, as a streaming stain of white dribbles from a cut, and then clots to make a cloud. You lot thought you could just stitch me back up; fill in the cracks like the concrete tracks you use as […]
His heart beat to poems recited By the act before him, or so it seemed And in his head were whispers, screamed Like a well projected voice His mind, quivered like so many programs Turning in the hands of a thousand punters Before lights down. Their eyes like predatory hunters Awaiting their evening meal. Fleeting […]
The knuckles on my hands ripped- like the top of barbed wire fence, separating my land and yours. My body an overbearing sand-dune dusty, grey shanty towns; aligned on the crevice of my stomach. My foundations; each bone laid out like a row of graves. The curve of my back; an Iraqi road split to […]
A pool of tears collect beneath the eyes of her British Isles. They swim and reflect the dawning of men. As her twisting pupils dilate, she strikes a monstrous blow from the fists of her United States. An internal conflict she seeks. An appetite for self-destruction so dire that as she weeps, an island is […]
See that space there in my hand. And that space there on the floor. That space, just like the space, Exploding from my eyes. Space here is abundant, Space for me to hide, There is always space. To much space. So me, they’ll never find. And yet with this much space, There seems so little […]
stars wash away sandmans act as my hand apart. attach. stay warm
Gray wall, fat cat yawns. A blank way splays all days. Flash a black flame, pack a mad rat Tat Tat Tat
Roy, doctor, MP: long top of polls, Two sons, no dog; strong on God; Smooth. Owns TopShop stocks. BBC vox pops show: “Doc Roy good for London”; “Doc Roy’s on top”; “Looks good for top job”. Doc Roy MP’s cosy. Too cosy. Doc Roy’s got sloppy. On London docks, Tom spots Roy’s boy toy. Not […]
Sam flaps past, calm as a mad bat, Hasn’t a map, sans hat, fad clad, A sad dad at a crap party. Grabs a stand and – Hardly a bard, Sam plays anyway. Crazy jams and whammy bars and… flat, flat, flat. Can’t play any jazz, and jazz fans pack all stands – Sam’s bad […]
A flag hangs and Sang that day, A man ran at lands, All maps drawn far as A man marks a way; Glad talk and stars fall Back. As a flag hangs, A man walks back And sands mark a land As art marks a canvas.
Sparks crack stars, black as aardvark abysses, and art. Arcs trap brash BMWs, as drag wasps snarl at fast, craft flaws. Warmth gnaws at catalysts, snaps at cars’ last mark: Saharan strata drafts. Crash-clad, A5 bawls at shanty byways, all caravans and hay carts. Lazy rays gray; a flash day. Cars halt at last, as […]
Tabby slams wacky tracts at Panda. Panda yawns, “Away and gnash tabby!” – sad and all banal. Aw, Tabby; tall and arch, “Any black cash?” and back at Tabby: crass and sham. “Any hack tart?!” Tacky and gay, Tabby’s away and yawns back at Panda.
Class starts. Al stands apart by Mary-Ann, awkwardly. As half man, half aardvark, (and all arms) Baths – says Al – lack charm. Crazy, Mary-Ann always stays and stands. And gasps. Al hands Mary-Ann a pack: “Hurrah! Classy Nasal Caps!” says Mary-Ann. Aww: Happy at Last.
A warm and calm May day Ava grabs a branch and plays Draws a path and says ‘Ha, that’s Ava’s way!’ Day falls fast and Ava gasps At a black sky that clasps many stars “Why, can a man stand as grand as a star?”
Drank a glass, had a fag: That’s a start…at dark, lay back, Watch stars amass: a grand And awkward sprawl. All that’s bad at dark shall fall All that’s bad shall fall, shall pass. At dark, man can say: – Was always sad; am happy at last. Can man stay happy? Can’t say. Why ask?