Poem In Which

I’ve been away from this blog for a long time and not managed to update it in nearly a year! In that time I’ve not written a lot of poetry but nonetheless managed to have a few bits published, one of which appeared in issue 7 of Poems In Which.

There are a few more exciting things on the way, including my first poem for children and the looming of Bird Book III from the lovely Sidekick Books folks. I’m also thinking about sprucing up this blog, making it more visually appealing, with some illustrations or something. I may even re-locate to a new website, but we’ll have to see.

For now this is really just a little update to say I’m still alive and active and writing, but focusing more on prose writing than poetry these days…


NaPoWriMo Week 1

It’s the end of the first week of National Poetry Writing Month. Every day for the past 7 days I’ve been writing a poem and posting it here. So far there have been tiny ladies living in u-bends, bewildered football players, forest deities working as doctors, pesky angels and a very ill politician. I’ve had some really good comments, which keeps me encouraged. It’s fun to see what others are writing, too. I’ve been reading loads of new poetry lately and it’s got me completely in the mood to just be free and write whatever I can imagine. Looking forward to the next 23 days!

#28 Yesterday I Thought My Mouth Had Stopped Working

It was a hole in my face,
for sure, but the mashed potato globlets
I deposited into the ready box

left no feel upon the viscous walls
of the vacuum funnel, the salami coloured
head pipe, the slick, oozy viaduct;

in effect my mouth and its apparatus
was entirely, jaw-wobblingly, numb,
was in truth more like the doll’s mouth a young child

willfully spoons tepid porridge into,
the lack of an actual cavity
meaning the porridge ends up shmushed against

the mildly perfumed, fuchsia rubber
that mimics the gullet hole,
but is the puckered mouth’s own fakery.

It then seemed possible that my own mouth
might be faking, might be a thin lie
producing synthetic spittle,

polluting itself with an ulcer or two,
regurgitating rehearsed platitudes
in the voice of a listless secretary.

It may wish to unhook itself from the lips
that would bind it, to search for other mouths
into which it might push its pretend tongue,

its tongue bloated with lies and generalities,
because it knows that we are all just things
into which other things may enter

and out of which other things may pass;
and the face’s blackened coin slot resisting
is the telltale sign we’ve malfunctioned.

#27 The Obsolete

If we were, say, two television sets
(the cumbersome old clapped-out kind)

I suppose instead of these gauche,
blue-jellied keys that are all the rage

these days, we’d be inserting cassette tapes
into each other (what girth has a DVD?),

hearing them clunk, satisfyingly,
in our toothy carousels,

and witnessing our recorded thoughts flicker up
in the glass egg of each other’s faces.

And so playing myself inside you
I might be lulled by this oracular sweetness,

by my own image reflecting off your gone features.
This is how all technologies meet their maker.

#20 Almond

We think we may scrape ourselves off
from the memory of a person,

as though slathered in vaseline,
until we recall their rhino-husk thighs,

how they betray the warm, sparking stink
of the alive and seem to inhabit

the beautiful space of themselves in the way
heaven could inhabit a certain nook

of cloud or bone or bluish cuticle.
So much of life is happening, has happened or will happen,

who’d not forgive us for needing
that which will never, could never take place,

to make that the hollow god
on which our fantasies feed – the uncanny alcove

glimpsed at the end of an alleyway
making dreams of its blind corner.

Everyone carries the unfulfilled,
this holographic almond, this lovely, lovely un-there.

#12 His Life Was The Idea

not the thing itself,
the soapy, unwrapped newness of the untouched,
the irascible pinecone of imagined sex
and how that might feel; how it thorned
his glossy, clinical and grey insides
to know there were people who did this,
people who inflicted pleasures on other people
like weird, excitable bugs
and thought exactly nothing of it.
His life was the lovely stasis
of the anticipatory ever prolonged,
sensory thoughts suspended in thick-hot
formaldehyde and strung about his neck,
there to keep him forever on the edge.

#8 I like to think

that the universe (or skin of things) is a plush,
sentient mink in love with itself

which (being in want of adornment) obsessively
pops a new person,

variable, quartz-unique, from its vast
and dust-twinkled, old dear-straddling back , until

its outer shell is entirely peopled,
infinitely scaled with miniscule men

and women. And then I like to think of those same
stippled people clinking,

pearls with tiny hair-buffed heads
soft as mouse fur rippling, budding beneath my fingertips,

as I backwards-comb the universe’s
fluffed cosmic coat.