Archive for June 2015

Sousse, Tunisia

A man died with his head in the sand today,
a notification pushed that image to my eyes
with bridge of palm into bridge of nose close handling,
made me stare upon congealed sand and loose limb brain
and I still don't believe it happened.

I'm keeping cries close over here,
muffling coughs into towels as the world falls apart
because out that door is behind the wardrobe you never saw,
Biff, Chipper and Kipper holding fort on bedside table airtime airports,
all whilst newsfeeds and jetstreams transport footprint flotsam to far off shores
where no one really cares for the marks it left,
too busy bitching 'bout some gal in San Francisco,
stabbed at gun point down the back of some Home Depot.

Under that parasol he slept,
a bullet in his head for doing nothing
hurting no one
and I'm on the toilet thinking,
stop your self from being so hard on yourself:
thus is life and all the web it'll tangle itself in.
Then my ribs turned to barbecue fingers and wet serviettes,
blood I thought ink swelled into debts and hyphens I thought were friends,
I sunk forward into a slump,
Flump over easy into downward trend,
singing some first song heard at birth and blind to it ever since
until then,
page one of Twitter.

Can we go now, please?
these warm French mornings are filling me up,
thick milkshake up tunnel straws,
tailback plumber's mop pushed through shot glass
and shatter
into pat-me-on-the-back, gummy bears against brick walls in mattress van dreams of a no seat belt driver going 70 in a 5 zone.

I'm not a driver nor an adjudicating passenger,
but if I was
take me, mid-morning, to a storm linen beach and lead me to the summit breaks,
there I'll listen with you
just with my head in the sand.


Strangers and angels 
and angles and stranglers,
in an age of nothing new

what's left to create?

I want an unedited you,
not Snapchat
but time-lapse,

not trophy of a sex tape
but tattoo text certificate-
look how brave I was.

Get over it.
Get past it.
Stop hurling milk cartons onto cobbles so you can cry,

elastic drags you back,
let go and wound and carry onto wherever you see fit,
the moon perhaps;

and I want to ask the dads when they went to space because they know so much about it,
but it's all from books
and BBC Four late night

tell me mores.
'Cos somewhere in here is a
gypsy boxer, low rank poker player

who doesn't know how the world works
and meditates, all odds bundled into clusters.
I've developed the taste for granola

and silent films,
quake teeth and aftershock tongues, berries rest,
under eye makeup and train chases,

cornflakes on mute, smooth talker,
my crunch is worse than their bite.

This is fourth time lucky cos the third didn't cut it. 

Lord of the Harry Potter. Another trilogy

is like getting caught washing up at four in the morning by the partner of friend, 
the conversation bypassing all formality-
then the expected question,
coffee or tea,
and/or cigarettes,
let's rest and talk until dawnlight plough has pulled day into place,
two hard sleepers who never cared to wink sitting face to foot,
stretched out, 
fresh flour cushions sat above heavy breath chests and cold forearms.
Empty wood silence, hummed car crash too far away to save.

Your dried eyes looked like they wanted to ask
what they fuck and why
to the question
where did they get to?
Always repeat things because next time they'll owe you,
we shouldn't have trusted them,
erase them from the book of expectation,
track back through equation with detectors set to pot-hole.

What does it take for something to become part of your five a day:
same shoes and bed,
rainy day hen party showers
because some of us have to cleanse daily,
pass the crown and shot glass.

Gillian Merlot

Gillian Merlot
is a mistress and a book binder
gently sewing on the shelf behind me,
she looks authentic in the wings with that fake smile of hers
plastered across in haste.
Her tears never rain
but tour down her face
in torrential laps of alpine needle flats
and Italian lakes.

I asked her to shower me in bank collapse clothes the day before an eternal day off, but she declined,
suit and booted me out of the job into
khaki shorts and t-shirts
opposed the Fitch & Abercrombie I should have never been wearing.
Merlot makes me feel fierce again,
out of debt and always in pocket
of another bottle
filled again with hotel sized portions of not a lot else
but backwash and murmur,
caught sound in conch shell just another Everyman Twitter moan.
Shut up,
the ones and zeros have tattooed your face in equations not even anti-feminist scientists can work out.

my nutella went cold, my heart broke

Fall back,
fresh bed;
the nest you made yourself not moments ago
came about through blueprint and rehearsal,
practice for the show
of more sleep and gust in your sails.

We forgot where that ladder led,
ran up it twice to a ruined viewing platform
where white sheet sky spat itself into cloud and sea-spray from the spit of headland
that pointed south,
back home via up north synapse of electricity
and bath time blues.

Sing to me Stop Staring and Do,
you're giving me more receipts than I can handle and keep,
so stitch them into scarves, neckerchiefs,
airport walking escalators,
something faster than the overwhelming sadness I saw in a German Shepard's eyes today,
bored he was lease bound and tied to a lamppost by the post
master's office. He'd rather have been kissing in car washes than have been sat there;
see the war paint mascara turn into a masquerade for yourself whilst sat atop a warm fridge than have been waiting for its owner,
pared down and ready to run,
catch up with Henry's wolves over the page, back a few. Years.

Grazed Needs; Your Child Is Not Lost.

Tea for two and two to tease,
the take me home fingertips leading you to the trees
next to the patch of bluebells where the weeds ought to be existing;
this seems as good as place as any to tell you 
that nothing lasts,
not even foil from Kit Kats,
David Letterman late night
talk to me shows
of emotional appearances
from things you had forgotten:
an end of a bed runner for the cot you haven't used yet.

Their fingertips would've been just like yours,
I assure you that here from my chair.
Squeeze until you can feel the blood running from your hands
for you to stop-
pretend their hands are vice grips
hold 'em close
and keep them tight,
now dream.

     What we said in the wind was no longer worth it once the hurricane had hit.
     We said wherever it was down by those library steps
     we wouldn't fall come jim-jams or knee-high-water- and we didn't.
     Look where we stand on rented ground,
     contract laid flat on grey wire tidy away,
     file me until you can no longer see me,
     only feel me around you feet:
     it's from all those filled-sink streams we let our toes swim along
     which was an exercise in tolerance,
     swell swept and roughened.
     Sometimes you're quicker than the rain,
     other times you're treading water walking:
     you can wager rain against residue
     in hope the puddles won't stretch out into lakes,
     but if you get a nickel's worth wrong 
     than let me assure you that swimming will turn to swam,
     your life vest lost to your dam deep chest
     asleep chained to motorcycles,
     lost pier driven, first flight.
          On entering shattered dream of ice rink on lake, love,
          the first thing you must do is regain control of all breath.
          Do not think of swimming. Do not think of your legs and all they've ever learnt. Do not think you will survive, that only leads to hope and that does not float. 

You wake like this most mornings,
the desert island disc you would save 
reduced to a haiku and handshake,
'welcome to your morning. Do not worry,
your lost fingertip does not mean a no-go family,
believe me.'
And after its whisper remains in your mouth of a cave
ear hole to more sleep,
you witness strobe and rapid reflections
in the hue of C, Pantone middle 633.
Either side
in turquoise
pass terraced houses
framing lost family members
with the living standing on their shoulders
so fucking excited to see you you immediately question their motives,
the answer they give: more fucking love.
It's overwhelming and this is every morning
usually ending with the image of you in ASDA,
half six, unshaven and hungry,
your picture key-fob falling into the self service hammock below,
the image of the family you had in mind butter side up
just five years from now.

Hold on,
it's all or nothing,
all or grazed knees.

Exercises in Tolerance

magnifying glass
you are standing in Bono's shadow
behind the sun
in not flashes
but streaks;
bleach marks across striped tops,
incandescent salmon,
hop lined chain mail smudges of
fickle stability dripping from your shoulders.

You said you wouldn't fall
come jim jams or high water,
all those filled-sink floods we let our toes sit among
were exercises in tolerance
and we both liked the swell,
the drip of lukewarm pasta bits and parts of potato:
a meal we didn't enjoy.
Sometimes you're quicker than the rain.
Sometimes you're treading water walking.