BlackI chew on the blubbery meat of my tongue,
But it revulses
So whenever I swallow I gag.
I try not to inhale the acrid hiss of discontent
That seeps out of the corners of my mouth
And runs a river down my chin;
It reminds me of peaches. I cry.
I have digested the venom
The black rotten root of my own plague;
Ingested it. Injected it. How quick I am to accept death to me.
As organs revolve, revolt, regurgitate
I caged butterflies in my abdomen
As if lushness couldn't catch them there.
I knew better.
I ple'd to the sewn-in stars and their makeshift tenants,
For salvation and for suicide.
They offered neither.
So I sit and stew in these bodily discharges.
Sweat, love, poetry, tears.
Let them pore out of me and penultimately;
(for my salvation hangs with the noose);
Erode me back to the stub of the soul,
That gnarled and raging root.
Who could ever love, a beast.
Breaking Them InSpasmodic heart,Breaking Them In2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Tumbleweeds through my chest,
Bang bang bangs against my ribs;
it demolishes me.
Palms on plastic,
Losing control again, Tell myself I
can can can keep getting through this.
It won't devour me.
Tears from the bridge,
Overexposed my pneumonic heart to
hope hope hoping that I could.
So afraid that I'd fail.
I refused to settle in ash.
No no no, I wouldn't endure another
year lost in the dark.
I gathered my tail,
brushed off maggot-sodden feathers
So so so frightened to fall
I barked, I bucked - and I flew.
Rock BottomThey say a rolling stone gathers no moss,Rock Bottom2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
so when I shudder to a halt
The rocks in my feet continue to grind.
I feel the sand in my lungs
and the regretful mist silting in my heart
as the waves come back in
reaching eagerly for my legs, spooling, churning
over me. Rooted in my misery.
I know the rocks in my feet will help me drown.
The EditorMakeshift by the lake,The Editor2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
I watched you finish my sentence
- Hastily retracting the bitterness
and editing out
my overstated meaning.
A fly serenaded you,
As you derooted the root,
- Deflowered the bud
and edited out
every semblance of a meaning.
I allowed it, in the summer haze.
For you to slather me
- In someone elses
soaked in someone elses feeling.
But when you slept at last
I arose, painted bleach by your tongue
- Shook off your petty rules
and crossing outs
and ran away, free - and feeling.
Sometimes, it's the little things.He always told me I was deep.Sometimes, it's the little things.2 years ago in Concrete Poetry More Like This
An unfiltered distillation of a humanitarian ocean.
He accepted me, gills and all -
He knew that I needed my eccentricities to breathe
under the seascrapers of pollution
that hung over my head.
Or he said he did.
At the end of it all,
he tugged the gills open to expose me;
my innards trailed across the coral reef
as I swam trustingly forward, hoping for the best.
I tried to believe.
I believed him, gills and all -
But eventually, he left me, with holes in my sides
Where he had spooned out my intestines
To tether them to a boulder.
I tried to breathe.
He always told me I was deep.
It must have been a surprise to read:
Death by puddle.
Hard.On days like this it is hard to move,Hard.2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
it is hard to dress myself.
Blouse, a chest plate; dress me in chain mail.
- with the helmet on it is hard to see.
It is hard to open my eyes, or lift my chin.
On days like this, it is hard to be human.
It is hard to raise my hands, to button
or to brush my mangy hair.
It is hard to construct the image of a person
out of these destitute materials.
It is hard to pump clotted, crumbling blood.
On days like this, it is hard to be human.
AfterIt follows me.After2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
My silver skeined ghost.
An almost imperceptible thread;
only visible when you shine light
directly upon it.
It follows me.
It rides the underground.
It hides under bridges,
It is woven into the spools of tar
that form the roads between.
Inevitably if I walk too fast
it reminds me -
Like the tug of stitches in your cheek
that reminds you; you have lost your wisdom.
It reminds me.
It trips me in doorways,
when my mind is elsewhere.
If I look away from it -
- it slips round my neck.
Another knot to throw over the beams
it mauls me without a fair chance.
I tried to sever it. I can't.
Only the corrosion of time has a chance.
So for now, I am tethered
to the fragment of my heart
that I tore out for you.
Although we have placed it in a shroud
and declared it dead,
the umbilical thrumming keeps me awake.
It does not desist;
the connection to that unwanted slab of meat.
Broken Birds and Stark PhrasesWe slip and slide and fallBroken Birds and Stark Phrases2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
down curves and carrow places.
We cursive at the wall
in our undefinéd spaces.
Disjointed limbs extend
to strumpet our arrival,
to warn who are not friends
we will kill to survive all.
Hung upside-down haunters
hug branches in the Forrest.
Merry nightmare monsters,
Cheery snarling chorus,
Arachnic children know;
you can run but you can't hide
from this disparic truth,
darkness waits for you inside.
Although you seek the sun,
as all creaky spinsters might,
the night can't be out done
and it has you in its sight.
ScarsSee the sharpness of my tongue-nibScars2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
As the metallic taste in my mouth draws out
A barking cough, forced out
By the dirty nicotine lining my lungs.
See the blade of stubbornness
That slices across my cheek bone;
An amalgamation of all the times you pushed me.
See the residue in my eyes,
The remnants of all those times you forced me
And I forced myself not to cry;
Those tears condensed into a thick blinding syrup
That colours all things red.
See the crinkle in my nose,
The wrinkles on my heart
As I remember how you didn't love me. (Don't love me).
See the burns on my psalms
And fingerprints singed off
By all the times you called me nothing.
See the manacles, the barnacles
The mutations and tumours.
See the invisible scars of the Battle of Us.
A love letter to my devotedHear me read it!A love letter to my devoted2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
A touch without invasion.
That ever elusive exhale of love in the skies.
The quiet stateliness
of fingers searching palms
He held my hand.
A kiss without allusion.
The constant thrum of light specks chasing sun rise.
The tenderest smile
of knowing, to be known.
She held my heart.
The patient sun without intrusion
Lit the world aflame through devotion in their eyes.
In absence of a poem.I chewed my pen to the nibIn absence of a poem.2 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
and swallowed the ink thoughtlessly,
but no matter how long I thought,
I couldn't say what you mean to me.
I tried, I tried and I tested,
every word in my diminutive range,
but I screwed up more pieces of paper
and happened upon something strange;
I noticed words, which have served me,
for all of my formative years,
had no power to convey my gratitude
for the times that you dried my tears.
Whenever I doubt myself (often),
You're the one who tells me I'm wrong
You lift up my chin and remind me, wait
for the good things that will come along.
I can't find a way to express how
you are the saving grace in my head.
So words can't tell you how I love you -
I hope my silence will tell you instead.
Of Nuisance LeavesHear me read it!Of Nuisance Leaves2 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
Leaves clutch their ropy fingers around the tree's limbs. The zesty leeches bloom, crack open overnight and slip silently up the nearest oak or maple. They pierce the crunch of bark and penetrate deep into the rubbery veins.
They feed. They pauperize plum and peach until they are heavy and brown; heavy laden with the stolen sap.
When at last they reach their fill the tree can finally shake them off emphatically, desperately, until at last it is clean again. The tree reaches its black bones to the sky in praise and as a new year begins vows never again to be the victim of leaves.
Talking to the FurnitureRichard found himself talking to the furniture.Talking to the Furniture2 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
"Ahhh" he sighed settling into his favourite chair "lets have a nice sit down shall we?" The question lay down on the floral rug and withered away unanswered.
"What's that all about, eh?" he grumbled to the doormat that had curled up snuggly against the front door, jamming it when he opened it for the milk, as he picked up his post. "What's that about?"
"Right then, let's get the kettle on" he chirped conversationally to the kettle which blushed until steam came out of its ears and boiled despite being watched. "Lovely cuppa" he said in thanks, and the kettle whistled shyly to herself until she was calm again.
"Come along then" he grumbled as he grappled with the lawnmower, "Come along, come along then. That's a good girl".
Richard didn't mind talking to most of the furniture, he had done it most days of his long eighty-six years. He had talked to the furniture as it had slunk into corners and nested in cupboards when they had moved in fo
My FavouriteShe is my favourite.My Favourite2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
No siren song marks me deeper.
There is nowt but dust between us.
She is the herald of my thoughts,
The anthem of my days
She knows all my knowings well.
She is tense and bitter
when I must wear my Brave Face.
She weeps when I may not.
She pours her secrets, vermillion,
From ink to blotted page
So I may toss them aside, and breathe.
She is my favourite,
She who unmarvels me marvellously.
She who whispers in my tongue.
DesperationYour spine is a secretDesperation1 year ago in Free Verse More Like This
my fingers can uncode.
Your vertebrae cracks open,
your secrets are exposed.
I suck out the tender marrow
and scrape flesh off the bone
hoping; if I absorb you
I will no longer feel alone.
a Novella of LoveShe wrote a novel on the back of my left hand,a Novella of Love2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
It washed away when she left me.
A chance secondI lie awake, staring at the cornices.A chance second2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
3AM: my fingers worry at the corners of my sheet.
My anxiety worries at the corners of my rib.
I bite and tug and huff out my misery
As the silence keeps me awake.
I lay with pressure of your absence
Pressing down over my nose and mouth.
A soft asphixiation of the heart, of the sanity.
It is a hot grey night in London.
You are awake, startled by the sunlight.
7AM: you can't lift your weighty skull from the sheet.
The day sirens, but you stay, settled,
Under the weight of your shroud, your loss,
Only the silence keeps you awake.
Unknowingly, for the first time in weeks
We are unintentionally in sync;
Laid out in funerial colours as we die.
It is a dull blue day in Dubai.
BuriedUnder the paprika house,Buried2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
are the bones of my father
and nestled between rib
and reason, is our love.
DaleHear me read itDale2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
They will not silence the bells for you.
The roses will not halt their will to wilt
and lilies will disassemble under the earth.
They will not dust Frankincense over cities
and trees will not bow down in grief
willingly donating limbs to become tissues.
But throats will dry out mid-sentence and
black hankerchiefs will be dubbed into pockets.
There will be enough salt to melt the ice
embedded around the hearts of old enemies.
Old enemies will turn friend once more
and the church will be full, packed with love.
The world is unlikely to take a moment's prayer;
Earth spins too fast to pause for any of us.
But the meagre collection of people you touched
(meagréd only by the tear-ridden knowledge
that you would have touched many more in time)
Will ache tonight and whisper of your friendship.
You were and always will be; loved.
The Bone CollectorSometimes my breath catches in my throatThe Bone Collector2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
and the very stillness of an earth going
a thousand and three miles per hour
gets lodged there.
Sometimes these simple exchanges
leave me breathless, croaking on dust:
the unfiltered pigments of other people's skin
and blood and ash
but with my tarred lungs and itchy eyes
I sit and sift through charcoaled remains,
alphabetising them from c to c. I am lost
in a world charred brazen.
Many things I have loved have turned to ash.
Many people. I was naive enough to think
that there was some perfect nutritional truth
that could outlast hell-fire.
I claw through a world turned ashen
and know those dead embers collect in my cells
They are the harbingers of a truth
I do not want.
The skittish earth throws its skirts about again
to unsettle us all, and I am unsettled
Alone in the dirt, organising piles of bone-dust
he did not love, at all.
The WallI punched the wall.The Wall2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
The paper broke, a split lipped frown.
That was the thin veneer of joy you painted over my cracks with.
I punched the wall.
The paper bloomed into a paprika tulip.
That was the rusting screw in your jaw swinging off its hinge with your lies.
I punched the wall.
The paint broke into a smile
and I chipped out its teeth. They were the over polished hopes of our future.
I punched the wall.
The plaster spluttered out a storm.
Smooth and sleepy; I scratched at its eyes for promising to look out for me.
I punched the wall.
The plaster coughed hard again.
My anger was a consumption and its tendrils spasmed out from the source.
I punched the wall.
The plaster caved into a hole,
reminding me of all I'd given you and would never get back.
I didn't punch the wall
When the dust settled and its small red brick heart lay exposed, vulnerable, afraid,
You punched the wall.
PorcelainDiane’s hand crashed hard into the porcelain as her knees hit the ground in front of her perfectly white toilet. She had over done it, she realised. She retched again and vomited into the bowl trying not to let the acrid smell fill her lungs because that smell often made her vomit again. She had been feeling rough for a couple of days but had decided to distract herself by cleaning, the kitchen was done but when it came to bleaching the bathroom the enclosed space made the cloying scent had seemed magnified somehow and it had stuck to the back of her throat until she had coughed it out. She was sick.Porcelain2 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
She was sick and she hated to be sick. She pulled the plastic toilet seat down and rested her arm on it so she could lay her cheek against her wrist. She felt the tears streaking over her hand and it tickled unpleasantly, but she was exhausted from the exertion of being so drastically unwell, so she did not move.
Eventually she knew she would have to get up. Warren would be home soon
ShockwaveFoetalShockwave2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Trying to fold the pain up
To trap it between the paper cut limbs.
But the shockwaves come
Pulsing from inside
To trap it between the paper cut limbs.
Trying to fold the pain up.
The Waiting GameHear me read itThe Waiting Game2 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
I gripped the ladder fiercely until my knuckles whitened and my bones complained at the strain. I remained this way, like a rigor mortised superhero until my mind associated the tight throttling hold on the wood with the concept of choking someone; at which point I let go, momentarily, alarmed by the violence of my own thoughts.
The slight shudder rippled up through the fluidous wood and you complained loudly of my carelessness. We laughed and you dripped paint down trying to cut open my scalp with splashes of mint. Mrs Coraline banged her walking stick against her kitchen window with a resolute scowl and we tried to straighten our faces and appendages accordingly.
You had steady hands, so you had gone up the ladder to carefully apply the paint to the gutters. We had been promising to do this job for a year now, but last summer we were too lost in love to be found by anyone, even someone looking so hard as Mrs Coraline. Th
Holding a Hostage - Draft One /I daren't close my eyesHolding a Hostage - Draft One /3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
The moment I do
You may dissapear.
I clutch at your body
Pressed between you
and the slate flooring we chose together
You and I.
I stroke your hair and murmur
My tearful confessions
- You've heard them a thousand times before.
There are sirens, love
and they come for me
They come for us.
They seek to part us, my darling
and I cannot let them.
No battering ram or tear gas
Could bruise me more
Nor make me cry more
I kiss your face
and try not to remember
How you looked when I fell in love with you.
You're not so different angel,
Not so different
Don't you fret. We will be fine.
He wants you
He is calling for your body
He longs to pull you to his darkened room
and have his evil way with you.
He longs to pour over your every pore
and delight in my misery.
He shall not.
They are smashing windows, sweetheart
and still I cannot move from here
Cannot bring my arms to loosen
From their stronghold round your