Thursday, 10 November 2016

thoughts from...(xi)

In some star-padded street, a comet chases its own tail. Behind the bins where Saturn's rings roll themselves square, a shy sparkle slinks along the cracks of the cosmos, avoiding light and anything else tinged with the lure of L words. This is real-life. A modern world full of anachronistic space architects too lost in sky-pie puzzles to move on.

Instead of twirling hair-ends, I twirl my heart. It looks a little like an etch-a-sketch experiencing that shaking stage. When I close my eyes, the clouds tilt in. Become more grains of grit caught in the troposphere of a tear duct. I cry daisies and dreams until my cheeks sleep.

Somewhere in the middle of the road, a fairytale witch dances on a packet of juicy fruit. She has broomsticked herself broken. A pigeon passes and beaks her up and is gone. Even the street where stars meet has its unfair share of conflict. I swallow quietly and slip into madlish again.

Do we dress like god for fun? Or Gorgons? Hissing our heads like some holy anomaly on a dreary noneday holiday? The kerbs have become contagious. Big breathing things with too many legs. They offer pockets and chaotic choices. I want to become an attic. Cobwebbed and cornered where wild things wrap shadows and shooting stars for the dark. I want to feed my soul spacedust and watch it glow.

The broken-beaked crow sends me moths. Powdered things without their wings. He is a magnificent masochist. And of course, I have an arrow ready for his heart.

Today, silence ticks like tourettes. I flick my feelings and skip home.

Write what you know

Distance, two ferrets on leashes, Northumberland Street.
Ghosts rising from spilled coffee and ripped polystyrene cups.
Lost Socks, always lost fucking Socks.

The Smiths, beef paste sarnies, hazy memories sharper
than knives - time. Always time. And clouds and clouds,
meadows. A headless mannequin through your window.

The first breakfast, Christ wearing a Hello Kitty skinny tee.
Me floundering on the threshold of your door after you're gone.
Your mam and the nun, strange familiarity. All of these books.

If you have a minute derision. Part comprehension in a takeaway carton.
The wonderful addition of Chris and Martin, flute-boys with wings.
All the special things in a pocket. Your death, always that.

November does this, with its deceptive softness;
barbed wire paying the toll of memories with autumn leaves.

Monday, 7 November 2016

Spoken through Static

Cars on the motorway guzzle the distance.
Grumbling machines that chew the silence
through a too-hot duvet as it begins its devouring.

'I think I might be lost...' Six soft syllables
defying the weight of the message they swaddle.
Wrecking balls on cranes; wings unfolding, away.

Your books breathe on the shelves.
Lines from Lorca lick a coldness into November.

Soft stings that spread from the read-to-death
spine of 'In Watermelon Sugar'.
Post-it notes wriggling their tongues,
tasting favourite pages in a battered
copy of the Book of Changes.

And this girl that cannot look at dice
without imagining your body rolling in a bedroom
where baby pigeons did a moulting
and you discovered other ways to be a lover
that didn't require a dictionary to decipher.

Loss. Like static, it whispers.
This clicking through channels
in search of the script of our lives.
Then the end credits, and this sound:
the slow, steady knock ghosting through
wood on a door giving in to a rotting
bathed in blue hues.

Flickering on/flickering off
through a lifetime - this haunting.

Saturday, 5 November 2016


Last night I dreamed about a woman with a long neck.
She kept burying her voice in a half dozen box of eggs.
They were broken, oozing. And weirdly, singing.

This morning as the snow fell, I imagined scarecrows
kicking magpies down into her throat. Kept wondering 
whether their feathers would dissolve her as she choked.

Not the way love does that's being bleached in a drain.
More like when it's sectioned, its heavy brand of 'insane'.

And this woman in my dreams, her long neck full of birds,
is she somewhere in the marshlands, thinking I'm obscene.

An entity of memory dissipating with the changing weather,
a creature neither living, neither born from bone. All ether.
Just a dreamed thing reeling a song through the late afternoon.

Unexact, a few flurries, barely a filament blown from a finger.
Steam from a cup of tea,  a wisp of ghost cooling to wander.
A dreamed thing, a haunting. This reality unable to love her.

Friday, 4 November 2016

Antlers Keep Sprouting From Owl Boy's Head

The lad I love has gone and turned stag.
Which wouldn't be bad if he hadn't hoofed
off with a vixen known for its city skulking.

When we were bairns, he had this trick
he did with his neck when the grown-ups
weren't looking, this way of contorting.

A maths teacher adopted by otters
learned us about certain angels hiding
in angles on half-circles of plastic.

How objects can behave unexpectedly
after being stared and stared at constantly
over bowls of cold crumble and custard.

If I turned bird, I'd want to be a buzzard.
Not for the feeding, or even the soaring.
More for the fucking they do in woodland.

The way my beak would be able to worry
a stag hoofing off with a fox if it felt like it.
The way I’d be able to blind them if I wanted.

Without his moulted feathers only visible to me.
Without that neck trick. That way of peeking in
rooms from the back of a spine, even in the dark.

So, lovely owl boy, the one that's gone stag,
be wary of sudden breezes as you rut over fields.
The one plucked for velvet, she flies feral now.

Wednesday, 2 November 2016

Roads: How To Wander

And I think of roads, how they unfurl.
Huge lengths of wallpaper, sticking to feet
and tyres of cars. Cut and rolled tongues
of rubber whistling miles the way grandfathers
whistle the tired dog in from the backyard.

Outside, clouds collect themselves like nuns.
Their whimpled ways of hovering, of spreading
the way fungus does underground, wrapping roots
through clarts, through the hovel holes of history.
Unseen in their movements, invisible threads

with long-reaching limbs. Their mulching ways
of hiding, of bedding properly in the way a spelk
does through exposed skin. The way love does.
Its stalkery gangle - a field of dog daisies pricking
the eye with their spinning wheel need of worship.

And when the whistling's done, the dog doesn't come in.

And the roads remember all the ways to be roads again.