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Harriet Maguire Apr 2014
What i taste,
Might be lager
And acid reflux.
But I'm pretty sure its you,
Flicking ash.
Over the side
Of my single bed.
For want,
Of an ashtray
Harriet Maguire Dec 2013
Watching midnight mass,
At something bigger than myself.
It's alright.
Just don't listen to the words.
Don't listen.
Cloaks rolled in blood?
Mighty God,
Prince of Peace.
Just hold me so I might sleep.
27 more
and I'll be 54.

Two of me
might just be,
But three I'm not so sure.
Harriet Maguire Feb 2014
I do nothing at high velocity
I sit here at 8 minute mile pace
The light speed at which
I sleep is laughable
150 million km from the sun
And even if i started now
I’d be lucky to reach the shower
Before lunch.
I have the audacity to presume
That the open heavens
(Pathetic fallacy in reverse)
Pin me to this bed raft
I am dry docked
With only dreams
Of dead voles and Peter pan
For company.
I promise today will be different
As I lift another drink,
& play the same song on repeat.
I couldn't break wind,
Let alone the herringbone
Of self righteous *******.
My speed is registered
not in mph but mg .
Washed down,
Washed out.
Like **** floating on high tide.
(Even dead fish make it)
I will be here if you need me.
But where will you be?
While I drift.
Live a life for me,
Harriet Maguire Dec 2014
Shrapnel bickering,
Over pizza and door answering
Beatles the new year in

BBC 2 poetry.
My cheeks flushed high
I'm under this year;

Deleted history

Haiku laughter tracks,

                                     born slippy.
Harriet Maguire Jan 2015
Our eyes catch fire,
Yours from the centre,

Mine from the corners.
I play chicken with the radio.
My crop suddenly stung
clucking in my
high throat no longer
stretched taught by laughter,
Or kisses bent back over shoulders.
No parting tongue

You're not coming back.

I should be glad (should)
but instead,
I play chicken with the radio.

Every love song now a car,
                            Speeding through,
My right of way.
My green light.

Beep beep.
A three faced figure came to me as I slept,
Told me of a hare moon that I must howl down.
Stinging tears of silver light to be born
From an eye central to my forehead heart.
The day and the night as long and as short
As breath inhaled and lost like the very last.
Or the very first, the birth of spring time.
"Celebrate with me" she spoke in tongues
And I sang an ancient rhyme to a Green man
Who stirred in me elemental love divine.
Harriet Maguire Sep 2014
Amalgamous plume of acrid smoke,
tendrils of gray,
With the same perfect snarl
as your upper lip,
Just up ahead,
You said.
A gaping hole,
My mouth caught by your eye.
Heavy lidded,
The edge of a pothole
Pointed out to me.
Burnt out reckage of an infermo
The likes of,
Dante had never witnessed.
That smile,
A cigarette burn
Sweet like a sloe.
You described in perfect detail,
the car fire that closed a road.
And 'A' car ride that rode my bones.
You *******.
You beautiful, beautiful ******* boy.

East or west the hills rolled,
post fertile, air clung warm
You pointed out the whine
of faulty clutch,
Maybe brakes?
(I didn't care).
When I could have sworn
that sound was the wind,
Through the hole recently blown
in my soul.

Sometimes I remember wrong
This time I forgot.

Thank you.

You beautiful, beautiful ******* boy.
Like Atlas in alabaster dresses
With high collars you girls,
Hold up the almost dark.
Lanterns full of gold,
Carnation, Lily, Lily, rose.
As the sun sets eternal
You stand and will stand,
Seven and lost
In light and fragrant dew.
Your sisters nape exposed,
The same colour
As pale paper.
Juxtaposed by
Black stocking-ed feet,
In meadow grass.
Attempt at an Ekphrastic poem, inspired by John Singer Sargent 1885-6 'Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose'
Harriet Maguire Apr 2014
To drown on land,
Seems such a waste,
When I could be swimming,
Skimming stones, building
Golden sand retreats for the over 50's?
I am the cormorant slick with oil,
Capable of flight,
Apart from the sticky residue
Of some paraben past.

Awash, but not cleansed
By saline tears.
John had a horse,
Her name I can't recall.
She'd weave but nothing ailed,
something not right with her.
The whites of her eyes
flashing all the time.
Like those cd's strung out
to ward off the sparrows.
She'd take a mint from you
then drop it in the straw.
She knocked him down once
whilst he tacked her up.
Then turned back to her haynet
as if she'd just broken wind,
instead of Johns ribs.
She could only be shod
if the weather was fine.
Father said she needed
taking out behind barn.
He called her Chappie.
Flat backed and dead mouthed,
Tendency to *****.
You couldn't get her in a trailer
without a board and whip
and plenty of hands.
She wasn't afraid
just backward in her ways.
She'd stand for the farrier?
If the sun shined
like I say,
No trouble at all.
Ex race horse John claimed
but who knows.
Aren't they all?
Mother made him ring
up to the house
if he was tacking her out.
She feared she'd throw him
Leave the old **** for dead.
She was head shy and I think
John did it to her.
I never saw him raise a hand
but he knew the bottom
of plenty of bottles.
Hid 'em in a welly boot.
Imagine getting up on that beast
when your too drunk
to find your ****?
The pair of them.
She never gave me pause
but I was small then.
They know, don't they?
Work in progress
Harriet Maguire Jul 2014
A child lies dreaming of sheep,
the bitter ache of bone marrow,
Fields of tissue.
Dying at a faster rate,
than the galloping pace,
Of normal growth.
Parents begging
for miracles.
That don’t involve
the longest sleep.

When God only knows
what they wont wish.
With peering looks
The cruellest release.
Belgium begged the answer,
and gave them the gift
of aborting that which cannot
be imported.

In the 5th degree.
How their little ones death warrant
will be signed by the King.
As a childs voice,
begs for lego
and an end to the pain.

Immature souls
can only credit to those who,
In fits
(not dissimilar to those endured),
Of passion.
Brought their blood together,
in innocence
To suffer catheter,
Iron lung.

Who will administer the saline?
Death sentences spoken across
political halls.
Echoing in mausoleums.

Men who know nothing of the pain
a child accepts
as norm.

When the norm is terminal.
Harriet Maguire Feb 2014
Jazz piano
The sound of hail
I can taste it.
My muscles ache with it

The dogs been sick
I don't know this
I just know
It's six o'clock somewhere
But not in here.
Death rattle
The same gravel noise
As the aspirin bottle.

I can smell her
Toast and marmalade
Hair red.
Like a nosebleed.

You devil.
You glorious devil.
Harriet Maguire Jan 2014
I over thought
Rubbed a hole
In my mind
It all falls out
Like change
***** penny
Copper, supper?
The words come
But not how they
Lid open
I'm doing it again aren't I?
It makes me a better suet
**** I can  do this.
****, kiss, liss-
Thats what we shall call it.
When the words come
With piebald sides
And no one but me
Can keep up with what i meant.
I like it on the hinge
Scissors cutting
My hair needs a blim
Like the one in my coat sleeve
Thats it.
No wait I meant
I think?
And the hole
The exact shape
And molar,
Of my galloping
Harriet Maguire Apr 2014
It was a Wednesday
Glass rim halo
A go go
Simply red on some stereo
From another room
Remind me this is real.
To beg
Is not to steal.
No one dropping by tonight.
Thank ****
So i drop out
Before the sun.
Before the street lights
Come on.
Yeah? That was it!

Stone plink, porcelain
So much for gravity.
Tell me what your heart weighs on
Where the rope sits when it's drawn.
Tight across a bobbing apple,
The seeds I'll taste but will not swallow.

"We don't **** the dead, just eat them."
Your words in my head verbatim.
A Pendulum regulated pace in the hall.
Thin hands shaken by metronome palsy,
The "I am I am I am" I abhor!

(Gedakt bellows double exhale)

Cuck-held hours and half hours marked,
The doors swinging open,
sole taxon escaping.
Waltzing through roped sections,
Fleurs de lis dancing in luxury Axminster.
I'm bare foot (no black shoes).
I can feel pearls warmed by my skin
the ***** barrel clasp already caught
my hair longer, the curtains drawn.

The heat of flood lights wafting door
Upstage left blinking open and closed.
An eye in this dark room regarding
Apron large enough to cater in parts,
or as a whole to Descartes, Luther, Walther
(I trip over the Latin, even in dreams
My tongue fat and regretfully English).
Who else has sat before your stage?
Me - up nights waiting for the lights to dim.
Your understudy tenderly exploring
High german, cheap shock value,
the God ****** quantity of it all.

The minutes on the wall wrong
as the aisle lights and fire exit signs
flash on but you never come onstage.

That door swings wide eyed.
I watch you bent at a table?
A light biting out your silhouettes.
A skull sits proscenium.

Your hands shucking oysters
Pearls slip the same way the knife slips.

The clock reads different again
Still we sit and watch you repeat
the task but you never bleed.
Too deft with that blade
(You know what they say about a death
in the first).
The stage lights distance you from me
My throat itches for liqueur.
I cannot seem to look away so I close my eyes
the lights go out.

I find myself alone in bed,  oddly sober.
Willing the dark to turn me over
so I can dream some more of
the Cartesian theatre.
I wait on that curtain the way lovers wait.
Harriet Maguire Apr 2015
You came home a comet,
lighting up our shared house.
I missed you like madness
whilst you went fortnight mad.

I knew from there on in,
just where we were going.
No second guessing us!
We are anyone's best guess.

We are technicolor,
bright blues, piebald teal
chrome fins flashing space.
In the gaps between stars.

I wanted to say it
"we are magic earthed to ground"
But I waited for you,
and it was worth the weight.
A cutting blade never dulled by use.
Obtuse, but fair he comes for us all.
Fall forward on his scythe,
Wife brother friend, any other
Lover, mortal men know not.

Crucially, sparingly, cruelly, dumb.
Some by ladder fall, aneurism, stroke!
Choking, smoking, cancer growing
Sowing our fragrant folly!
Calmly toast to death himself!

Here here!

His skull and black cloaked hand remind us,
cuss-ing rib trapped hearts chest high,
Why the moments fleeting?
Greeting all we know as life,
The gift that must stop giving.
Harriet Maguire Mar 2014
I will never understand
How counter culture
Became popular culture
Maybe it is consumerism
All that is purchased over counter
Becomes popular.
Is that how the bar ****** fly?
****** addict chic
Tramps backpack full circle
Camo pants retailing at
The price of a warhead
When did the fringes fold in?
How did the Outkast
Get number one?

What do you do?
To keep 'cool'?
To stop the sunlight streaming in?
Pied wagtails dance in pairs,
Never the same as it winds up
but as before when it's all done.
A cat basks in a sun spot to sleep,
Spring furloughed at the window
I imagine how flies die this way.
Trapped by the privacy nets
spying on the neighbours.
Harriet Maguire Apr 2014
Good Friday gooseflesh,
Black tea, breeze.
The psychopathology
Of everyday life.
Harriet Maguire Jun 2014
We are the hokey cokey generation.
Drinking cheap wine,
playing scattergories and smoking joints.
Watching major league wars.
Kissing strangers,

*******, baking, roller skating.
Harriet Maguire Dec 2013
God is a blown out tire.
a hiccup when you meant to sneeze.
God is an astronaut.
A multi storey car park.
A culinder
a towing hitch.
God is a prosthesis.
God is an audiobook
a citronella tea light in June.
Are you getting it yet?
God is phone signal
mismatched cutlery.
A splinter
God is the washer left over
After assembling flat pack furniture
God is a for sale sign
Outside an old friends house.
A phone call at 4am
a pencil sharpener.
God is bottled water.
a cleared throat.
The tab on milk bottle tops.
God is backspace
God is "you're just in time".
Limescale at the bottom of your cup.
God is blinking
God is tripping over your feet
God is shot in game
God is "your gonna be ok"
Herd animals fear separation
more than they fear death.

The shepherd calls for calm
because panic taints the flesh.
The way women in visions draw baths
Perched with ball and claw feet.
Water running green.
A few twists with the left and straight down.
Then just how ferns render in 2D
the bottom left comes umber.
I never interupt her here but I should.
That green water rolling endlessly
making me anxious for it to be done.
I hum those first few bars for courage.
Her stare meets mine and I blush.
A circus tent pink red for more imodesty.
Inside a yellow woman and a green man.
I push around
Purple anther, white, brown, blue.
I can't tell you how,
Wooden like a dutch clog
but recogniseably
A tulip.
Fitting really,
The vision ends here I'm afraid.
They are never finished
those paintings hung in mind.
Harriet Maguire Jan 2014
I will steal no more glimpses
Of your eyes,
Or the shape of your mouth.
Or imagine how our faces
Would look
On our first born.
I won't burn in the pit
Of my stomach
Every time your phone beeps
And its her (again)
4 years is a long time.
When I haven't known you a year.
I won't share your bed
Or turn over
Dehydrated, unable to spit a tanner
And watch you sleep.
I will not kiss your for’ed
Or sing ’74-75’
In the hope you'll share my love
Of that song.
It's all fun and games to you.
I can't see the humour in it
But only because
I don't want you anyway,
I'm just ******
Because you don't want me either.
It's silly really,
These metaphors.
When it all comes down to
Me, and hypocrisy.
Harriet Maguire Feb 2014
Bruised arc of purple
(Just below my ear)
Mottled pattern
Of rotten flesh.
By gin and inhibition.
He was pleasant
Leaving beads of dew
Like it was dawn
Not the dead night .
I don't expect much now
The gentle wound
Of open mouthed kisses
Will fade.
Re-absorbed by my core.
I will harbour a worm
And my seeds
Will be doubt (mostly)
And self loathing.
And then I will be
Another fruit.
Harriet Maguire May 2014
That wallpaper
Like pretty death.
Fleur des lis
‘flower lily’
Death by proxy.

We cant do this,
Whilst the welts still burn.
Jam red.
No amount of neck


Will roll down the waistband.
To show you Jerusalem,
Knee high.
Feint blue lines
a red margin.
So crushingly lonely too.
It's not what I ever want for you.
For me to copy overleaf
wet with blue holes.
But oh God do I want for you.
So many nights I prayed
and now you're here.
The nib drags at the paper.
My copy book was right
and I pray some more
that you won't
for my poor handwriting.
Harriet Maguire Dec 2013
I know you know
I know that you know I know
So why pretend?
To pretend to pretend.
Don't apologise.
You'll be sorry for the ’sorry’s’
You've lied.
In the back of that taxi,
Back from the night that never happened
The night that should have been day?
Did I know about that too?
You did.
So that’s two.

I'm gonna chalk a line

Under you.
Dog and Goat perform the wool rite,
A deluge of silver flashing forward.
South wind where best perch to weather?
Lie me basking in your splendour!

Cast around the hill back footed,
Sky clad before spent beech leaves.
New greens are flashing here and there,
A Frost that whitens morning air.

Storms blow to cleanse Her of her dying,
Him of sins inside Spring flowers.
Dance for it is time to plant new seed,
Luperci pressed in chick ****!

Exalt in stirrings deep as marrow,
Have dandelions mark the passing.
Though limbs of Oak hold up pale plaster,
The Summer comes in Springs soon after.
Harriet Maguire Dec 2013
Lying, sitting, standing.
None of which are comfortable.
Ache, after ache, after ache.
I stand, I sit.
In an attempt to comfort it.

Oh my lovely young bones.
To old to grow to naive to know.
Of arthritis, porosis.
It seems to fit.
That I should feel so unlit.
In bed, or chair, or crouch.
I know the strain is only from
Another position kept to long.
I know I know
I need to move again, to show.

It’s less about my bones.
And more or less about my head.
Harriet Maguire Sep 2014
Oil spots on driveways,
Soap ****,
Mirrors reflecting empty rooms,
Summer lilac.

Blue tac,
dog *****.
Pictures of John Travolta.
Shadows with sharp edges,

Swirl like
Artex ceilings,

at ten below.
Men in the corners

A train striding through a field.
Here I am.


“I think I’ll take a walk”
Guess that makes all of us,
that open mouthed tear.
Knowledge is power
'France is bacon'.

You sigh because you think I'm being
mellow dramatic.
I sigh

because I know.

Bodies fail,
Some times it's a disk pad,
Or a spot
of rust somewhere.

Gotta remember to roll up my window.
Harriet Maguire Dec 2013
If you'd asked me on the way,
My shoulders burning,
Jeans wet,
I'd have said I was alive.
I held on for a grim death,
But it never came,
You held those corners
So well,
The back end slipping out.
You're a good kid.
Today was as good a day as any
To nearly die.
Harriet Maguire Aug 2014
A thistle, a burr.
Caught in my chest like some infection.
A deep welt,
Biting like open mouthed affection.
Some hell,

I’ll see you on the other side.

Come closer sweet love.
I'll breathe it into some confession.
Cup of tea?

Apology on tip of tongue.
Tied like some *** crime victim.
My hell,

There their.
Forget I said anything at all.
Harriet Maguire Mar 2014
Ochre furrow across the fattest part of her upper arm.
Lines akin to a cattle grid at the abattoir.
I only saw because she insisted on helping move the ****** sofa.
When pressed she uttered in off hand
“Think on it as a mindless act of vandalism”.
Broken window theory in reverse? I had to admire her.

She made perfect sense
For a crazy person.
Harriet Maguire Dec 2013
Sodium arc light blinking,
I thought you were a moon.
Not pock faced,
Nor teasing slither,
(Like some half open eye)
Perfect you were.
By your halo, separate
From your support.
All cat whisker a-glow
The sky your edifice.
A back-drop of pink
And gold spilt.
The sun setting behind you;
You didn't care.
Still you shone.
Your light pathetic really
As the gennies fired up.
You made the gas tower
An amphitheatre,
The rats, long legged shrews.
You walked me home,
The night I chose to leave.
Harriet Maguire Dec 2013
Once again you've gone to bed
On an argument
And left my poor mother
On the sofa.
Like she should give thanks
That she is a dog
Allowed on the furniture.
I sometimes wonder
If you're on something?
You married her
Some 30 years ago
And still on birthdays
You're on her case?
You're on thin ice
If you hadn't noticed.
She’s stronger than you now
Her back a rod.
From so many nights in a chair
With the television on.
Harriet Maguire Dec 2013
Another day another molar.
Beef patty-ing my inside cheek.
Another night another squalor.
Bad dreams not remembered
Other than by heavy sweat,
Similar to pancake batter.

Another day another pound
Of flesh I’ve gained from lying here.
Another sheet, another pillow,
Propped against ***** mattress me.
My cerebellum smoothing out,
Like crayola by the storage heater.
Another window opened wide.
A pale attempt to let in ozone,
Pea soup, bird song, pale onion sky.
The planes I hear but cannot see,
Will drop bombs on N.Korea
If only in Klonopin dreams.

These are my concerns.
Harriet Maguire Sep 2014
Soft as the breath of 'babes',
The strain in your traps.
A series of unfortunate coincidences.
Our lips stick,
Fly paper for the hairy black
of monkeys.

You apologise,

They get lost on me.
(Not the monkeys)

God help us no.

The “sorry” ’s.

Never apologise,
Never explain.
Harriet Maguire Dec 2013
White horses.
Couldn't drag me away.
Not with all the green snakes they have.
Lurking in their bellies.
No written word or painted scene.
No Who.
Or Stone.
Or Radio head.
Can save me from this madness.
Harriet Maguire Apr 2014
Lying awake at night
Dreaming of the day
We wake bathed in sunlight
Instead of the ****
We forgot to take,
Before climbing in the shower.
Is this is it?
Is this is it for me?
All of us
Knowing it is us,
1st person perfect
Who will squirt windex?
(Not me, no no no)
At plate glass.
Soap ****/***.
Tears, maybe
But i doubt it.
I was never a morning person.
Barely time to brush teeth
When the day is too long
To cry in the shower.
(When it would help to)
So we howl at night,
To various crescent orbs.
We twitch under cotton
And hold pillows
Like lovers,
Who would undoubtedly,
About our habits
Dripping wet towels,
Coffee rings on ottomans,
(**** in the cubicle).
If we were really perfect,
Deserving of affection,
I wouldn't need a slash
Everytime i hear running water.
Sorry for being
I won't look too long at the Hell fire tiles
(daguerrotype-ing candlelight, porcelain condensing)
Lest I go mad.

I ask the ball chain snaking down
"Where are you going now?"
No reply.

I conjur cat-fish whiskers
and the water amplifies the signal.
There you are elbows to knees.
Hellfire clinging to the cut glass you raise,
your hands just how I imagine them.
Just like the real thing.
You never look up

Lest I go mad.
Harriet Maguire Jan 2014
If all things pass into the night
Where does that leave us?
At the start or the end?
Me with your t shirt inside out
On the 7.37 train out of some backwater
Don't frown.
I don't get it either.
I’m not sorry.
I am your teiy follit
You are a spoilt paper.
& I won't apologise for anything.
Harriet Maguire Feb 2014
I writhe against mattress.
My heart
A bird trapped
Beneath bedsheet.
My breast a pillow
For gravity.
I live between here
And reality.
Days lost
To dust motes
And patterns in
Bone china.
I am,
I am.
Come at me,
Green with envy.
Blue blooded.
Blood sport.
I win
Because I don’t need
Chemical interference
Mental indifference
Plane of conscience,
I know acid burns,
And coca cola
Spilt across synapse.
Who needs drugs
When you feel like this.
Breathing in.
I win.
I always win.
I ride the wave
And wash upon
Golden sand me.
The only
Is ****
That always floats
I’ll worry about
At next low
I love
Being alive
Its hard to write
But it means nothing
I feel
Nothing more.
Right now,
I am
In the eyes
Of God
I know,
But no one is
Right now
Than kite
Harriet Maguire Dec 2014

No one believes me
when I say it glows.

The dark swarms.
With dreams I've lived,

I cry to return.
Cheek on cotton,
Fidget, cramp,
Fight for breath
Sleep perhaps
A chance to rest.

I will dream it to be so.
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