Do you see me brother?
A feckless skyscraper marching on.
Not deaf but deafened, not blind but blinded,
I watch myself marching past the children,
a million miles away and
all in pretty rows.
We were these children once
before blue academies and flags and books and songs written by long-dead men,
the songs we used to sing, we watched the soldiers,
marching by we marvelled at the colour.
They were so handsome then.
I find you, with graveyard eyes,
brother I feel those eyes on me.
You, who watched me marching by,
you, who turned against
that old familiar stench, drift
into my sleeping focus.
I will not rest-
the rivers of blood are sated. Tonight as I listen to the old recording:
“As I look ahead, I am filled with foreboding”
Like the roman I see the Thames is foaming and all is red.
A needle skips,
the hush descends.
The tears flowing from my eyes
are invisible to me, the taste of them is all that’s left. I shout and scream into the bed
but still I find your staring face.
Locked safely far away from me.
Locked safely in my memory.
And I choke on empty air.
There are those who’d curse the paintings
That held the highest beauty
For being formed from something
Impermanent as oil and paint
Intangible as light.
There are those who’d curse a romeo
Cast in stone relief
For such vanity, and hubris
For how could such a man
Begin to know such beauty and
The truth of open feeling?
There are those who would cut this holy wire
That tethers us across the world
For fear of some lurking evil
Some banging in the dark
That’s bound to take our souls away
Some lack of love or depth
There are those who’d see the flesh on flesh
And cries like angelsong
And **** it for it’s fleetingness
For their father’s love was purer.
For their father’s love was strong
Their poor and lonely fathers
Cursed to loveless love
Oh brave new world that I have seen
That has such people in it!
Who cry for long-forgotten men
Yet **** the ones before them!
wrote this in anger after the 50th poem I saw pass by which complained about the evils of modern technology and society
Sparklers and orange bloom
flowers that only shine at night
and wake in the dawn with light and furious colour
like the fourth of July, crackling steak on metal
smoke and seeping juices, screaming meat
rare, just as you like it, on this, our independence day
(everybody cheer) or was it the eleventh?
I forget such things now and then
surely, it's the eleventh for them over there, playing in the sandpit
and the eleventh hour, no less. Tell me
did you see the game?
Draped, casting green-grey shadows
Over the pine trees
Clouds stretch, burst open
Above wet winter streets see:
The blue sky shines bright
Solemn music box
Singing heart of wood and wire
Bought to play for her
Smell of cordite, soft
resolution, half whispered:
Slow ash on the wind
Took a break from posting since the solstice, hopefully this should see me back on track
Shaking and clumsy, fumbling in the dark she
carefully crawls over the bed,
like a snake, her lover’s sleeping form twitches and rolls.
Crusted, liquid eyes struggle
to find the shape of the door
in a room she’s been too many times
thirteen years and more.
The bottles there are empty now,
the cool spring where they laughed
and bid each other drink, and be merry.
They were students then.
Now the wallpaper’s peeling, the winter wind is howling
at the thin glass windowpane.
She finds the door,
leans on it, spilling into the hall.
The bathroom light’s too bright for her
but she can just barely see
the fading summer sun.
See them go..
A million suicidal shamblers, staring out
Hatred and beauty and dilated eyes
And long hair punks waiting for a revolution that will save them. United in disunity, calmed by deaths and shocked by wonders of medicine
Cool and collected, lost and dyslexic
They wonder at the halogen lights and stare at extinguished candles
Catching at the edge of their sight a whiff of angel-smoke
How many were cast out and how many ran
To this mecca, this eden, this dying heaven
Filled with the dead? Who knows
They are the ones who wander in daylight through the city square
Swigging red wine and chanting obscene hymns
***** millennial drag kings of all they survey
living in art deco flats, old factories and empty rooms
they lie awake and listening to the shunting streets outside
and the symphony of buskers on the corner.
They love each other in wild ******
Dancing to rhythms stolen from ***** songs
Screaming, bellies full of claret
And brassic basic dysphoric cravings they writhe and fall
And hum against each others’ bodies
Drawing knives along each others’ veins
Waiting for the revolution.
That will save them.
Enfield punches the ground, wheels throw up muddy rainbows
from where they sank with the rain. The rider, some fresh young college thing,
flinches as it ricochets off his goggles, then unsteadily pulls away
wrestling with this strange machine. The old blokes laugh
with their propane cookers and badger-stripe beards, slick
with bacon grease and spit. Outside the beer tent
a kid fingers an old blues tune on a scarred and beaten acoustic.
Coins thrown into an old railway cap, her grandfather’s
smile golden in the sunrise.
See the flower girls go by
holding petals up to god
holding hands before the lords
and shouting out “come buy”.
they dip their pens and write in pollen
they offer crimson roses
for a fiver, see them
take a knife and form the petal
into the perfect, imperfect shape
of a star.
See the crowds that gather round
and coo and cry in awe
at such beauty and such artistry
see them cheering at the sound
of dripping life from dripping fingers
for a fiver see them
the maddened flower girls
holding hands before the lords
and shouting out “come buy”
I saw you, the summer child
lying in a bathtub filled with stars
while clouds spread through water.
Reddish, pinkish lips stood out
on skin the colour of pollen, ash
spreading, staining water.
The stars I learned were razor blades
I cut myself as I pulled you out
and ash slipped through my fingers.
Midday come early on Sunday morning
you should’ve seen the basket that they tossed you in,
covered with roses, perfumed and veiled
you would’ve liked my speech, I hope.
You would’ve liked his eyes.
He’ll worship you, I know.
He’ll make a pilgrimage
every Sunday that would make a novice blush
in envy, but for love
he’d follow you, his angel
all the way down with communion
‘till he’s sick, I hope
The night is still and the house is bathed in silence
Warm orange glow glides from lamp to lamp
She has set there on the couch, hugging her knees
For days now
The sun, as it passed, saw her there
At least twice now
Immobile, she breathes
And the house breathes with her
A letter sits, envelope jaggedly ripped open
A letter she knows so well
She could trace every one of the paper’s fibres
Plot each one of them to their end,
and read from the ridges of ink that dart its tundra
she could not tell you every word
“We regret to inform you”
“In his sleep”
And the rest is sand on a desert wind.
The words, though few, leave their mark
Purple bruises that blush each cheek
And a churning sickness in her gut.
Soon the flies will descend,
He will rot on the paper in front of her
Turn into an idle thought
Castrated by the healing wounds
But now she weeps for her defeat.
He knew you see,
It was nothing but one last last word
One last fight
One last calculated tear
All before she had the chance
To finally see him die
I’m obsessed with a guy.
He’d pay for a chance to sing the blues.
Just a taste of that weary hard-bitten life.
Just a taste of the pain and heartbreak and grief.
Just a taste mind you.
I’m obsessed with the martyrs
that strut to and fro fearing only death,
and those ****…
What do you call them?
that strut to and fro fearing only death.
I’m obsessed with the vagrants.
Going into the world with so much honesty.
With mad religions screeching, seeing Doom and Death and Capital.
With mad songs of ****** and Sunlight, Rain and Drink and ******.
And mad poems, pages long, that howl into the darkness.
I heard them sing electric carols at the railway station,
and concrete O’ Fortunas on the bridge.
I heard them play on their leaf-spring guitars the mocking rhythm
of the groaning streets
that echoes in the mind for all of its humour.
For all of its tragedy.
And I’m obsessed with the poets that dreamt
and dared to stop dreaming.
And laid themselves down into spiral notebooks
and were cast in stone above their alma maters
The sick green lights are off.
The takeaway was eaten
hours ago it seems.
The bottles are half empty.
The hourglass half full.
The clock is reading: TWO AM.
The movie is boring, she paces
across the room, crushing wrapping paper beneath her feet.
Her lover is upstairs, sleeping soundly,
she will leave before the week
is up, and the moments…
Every second a knocking.
Every minute a nail.
There's some baileys on the mantelpiece
it tastes strong and long and sweet.
She turns the fairy lights back on
and basks in Christmas Day.
— The End —