AfterIt follows me.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Sleeping soundlyHe's talking in his sleep againSleeping soundly2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
And I can't help wondering
If he's saying all the things he feels he can't say
When I'm (not) listening in the day.
HAIKUWRIMOCOMPLETE 2013HAIKUWRIMO2 years ago in Haiku & Eastern More Like This
February 28th, 2013
A feeble whimper for help;
roar of these raw times.
February 27th, 2013
Gluttonous ash cloud
sucks the moon's blood
and swallows the night.
February 26th, 2013
Bark! An explosion!
Angry bodies escape the
network of lung cells.
February 25th, 2013
multiplying, honing in,
determined to kill.
February 24th, 2013
Tea and sympathy
for my dear sister.
February 23rd, 2013
I will hold my breath
as the north wind does the same
waiting for your love.
February 22nd, 2013
He hovers behind;
February 21st, 2013
A long slow curve,
your smile upon my shoulder,
a scar of your touch.
February 20th, 2013
Where do you go while I sleep?
To whom do you run?
February 19th, 2013
Whorls from fingers
Imprinted in the trees
Count their rings too.
February 18th, 2013
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.
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.
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.
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
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.
Broken Birds and Stark PhrasesWe slip and slide and fallBroken Birds and Stark Phrases1 year 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.
Of ForestsPinecones are the skeletons of foetal trees.Of Forests2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
They are the hopes, desires and dreams of a forest
reduced to the brittle, breakable bones under it all.
They are the unburied memories of loss.
United, We WriteHear me read itUnited, We Write2 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
0hgravity, if by some divine fortune you should decide that today is the day you will fail me, then let me soar through the ChemicalSkyline. Grant me a-lovely-anxiety that raises a storm InTheStarryNightSky for me to riseandbe above all else. Let me soar.
How I long to be the frail rider-on-the-storm and not a victim of the RoamingShadow, Rogue-Of-The-Night, that BlackVelvetNightmare of my nights and days. I long
I will remember for youDo you remember;I will remember for you2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
It was September and I was seventeen.
I was gnarled into the corner of a bus
Mithering away at my gloomy mood;
Trying to shake the oppressive landscape in my mind.
It was unexpected.
It was unexpected to see you there.
You were folded primly onto a bus shelters seat
With her hand enveloped in yours
You both lifted your other hands, synchronised,
And waved to me with your familiar smiles.
I was surprised.
I was surprised to see you there.
Your grey hat tipped so rain slipped off
And her glasses whitening with the steam of her laugh
I just looked at you, gluttonous,
I absorbed every detail of that moment.
It was unexpected.
It was unexpected to see you there.
But there you were nonetheless,
Eighty years old, clasping hands awaiting a bus
My eyes leaked they were overfull of the sight
Of two people, quietly, silently in love.
I was surprised.
I was surprised to see you there
BlackI chew on the blubbery meat of my tongue,Black2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
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.
TerminalI want to kill you.Terminal2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
I want our love to be terminal,
And for it to be wrapped
around your heart tight when you die.
I want you to be looking
into my eyes when you do,
And I want you to know
what I have done to you,
I want our love to be terminal,
Or rather; til death do us part.
I meant what I said,
I want our love to last until you die,
Or I die,
Or beyond that.
I want to spend my life with you.
Sea SaltI walked along the bracket of the beach with a pocketful of salt that the sea no longer wanted. I had originally intended on returning it (one day), I didn't mean to keep it. Technically, because it wasn't mine, I stole that salt. I sifted the crystals out of the water and rolled them between my fingers until they were eroded smooth by the ridges in my fingerprint. Fingerprints embedded in the evidence. Salt embedded in my identity.Sea Salt2 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
They never caught me. I was never reprimanded for stealing from the earth. I should have been. I should have been.
Mother EarthMy body is the earth;Mother Earth2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
See how under this bruise
A seed of malcontent sleeps.
See what grows out of each pore
As the pain pours over again.
There is rust in my fingerbeds
That poisons the roots
Of all good that hopes to grow here.
I am the convulsing, revolution
of the convoluted Earth...
I am the tectonic blades that clash
and shout when I curl up and hide.
You will feel me when I tremble,
and fear me when I explode
for under the magmanimous skin
There burns a core of hate
That can't be marred by human hand.
The Food ChainCherish swam through the ocean sleepily, her eyelids bobbing over the dark orbs on either side of her narrow face. She exhaled bodily, her fins expanding and then slowly contracting in time with the water rushing in through the minute slashes that ran down her sides. Her fingernail sized heart trembled vivaciously, on the edge of a violent flurry as she skirted past a Dorado unnoticed. Her mind was elsewhere, circling, circling, like a Sprat in a see-through spherical piece of coral. She slipped down through the seams holding the ocean together, down to the ocean floor. Here, far from the noise of the surface dwellers, she could forget. She could get lost in the opiate beauty of the aquanine seascape. What Cherish needed now, more than anything, was to get lost-- a bite, a snare! A fragment of crystal caught her and slid its sharp brutality in a clean slice through her paper body. In less than one minuscule flutter of her already blue heart the water coloured red. In the last moment ofThe Food Chain2 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
SpellboundI am not enchanted.Spellbound1 year ago in Free Verse More Like This
The dreams come
but they are not dreams at all
and I am not asleep.
Your hand sliding up my thigh
and your groan slicks itself onto my neck,
embeds itself into my skin.
I wear the remnants
of your ecstasy in my flesh still.
It crawls when any other nears it.
It came to be that your bed-side clock
replaced my fearful heartbeat
as I laid in stasis and hoped -
for a passing; of time, of fingers, of life.
I cannot sleep with ticking in my ear anymore
I don't think of time running out, but of paralysis.
I think of lapses of concentration,
I think of those slow burning moments
that stretched out longer than I wanted
and lasted longer still. I think of the tears.
I am not enchanted.
The days pass
but they are not days at all
and I am not awake.
I am pacified by the numbness
of lobe or cortex that controls memory,
a self imposed strike out against you,
a strike my hand should have made.
Regret is buried
six feet beneath my fingernails.
Haiku: The Wake Up CallDolls head; smashed in road.Haiku: The Wake Up Call2 years ago in Haiku & Eastern More Like This
Cotton contents flutters by.
Drunk driver sobered.
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.