Monday, 29 June 2020

It’s Alive (But the Jury’s Sitting)

It’s Alive (But the Jury’s Sitting)

You’d think on viral days they might give it a rest
these early rising double breasted, great crested,

Shrieking Yammer Tits. Dawn chorus sunup clods
you’ll switch on for news with some resigned nod

on know-all day, they backhand dodge every call,
squeezing out paste-board mock up titters for all

stupid enough to enter here. Over it like a rash,
ruin football stats like any stupid hack and dash

out parrot rote cliché, twittering gegenpressers,
interview second rate past-it comedy managers

for kicks and giggles. Look: just piss off, go away,
put a sock in your hole, ruin somebody else’s day,

but no: cut to music, like they’d know a cool set,
recall more seventies stars than you’d ever forget,

wheel in poor misbegotten wet public virus inmate
from handkerchief back garden, giving us updates

about fridging four tins of McEwans Export for him
some sweet Asti-Spumante Lambrini raspberry gin

whipped up in an instant under cheap windbreaks,
leaking tents and piss puddles soon turn into lakes

by a portable telly. Fire up disposable barbecue sets
for a locked down bubble-up, double-up Glasto-fest.

You find this squawking repulsive, then turn it off,
they say, but, no, it’s always there, ears of cloth,

creamed jeans and wet patches, all endlessly fine,
relentless high pitched constantly repellent whines

of gosh, goodness, I’ve lost the page in my script,
into spongy microphones full of dribbles and spit,

toss homebrewed piss-grenades into the crowd,
never knowingly right; never unknowingly loud.

Thursday, 25 June 2020

Yesterday’s Enterprise

Yesterday’s Enterprise

I thought it was you, yesterday’s Angel;
who had dared break love’s enterprise
to me, those few long yesteryears ago
when I was so much more the man.

Yesterday, driving past a shop too fast
to be sure, you’re standing by the door,
laughing in tight blue; I kind of knew
the punch-line to whatever shared joke
it was might have then just tickled you.

Corner shop, remember it? Cheap rate
bottled booze, under the counter fags,
bread and cake past its sell by dates,
2 for 1 own brand dishrags, ratty bags
to tote home the odd flavoured crisps
you try once at your own risk. We split.

Slow, slow and quickstep your sidekick’s
parking - see that’s me in front, pulling
up heart-break handbrakes, grasping
for shock absorbers, inertial dampers,
both awe-frozen by whatever chance
took us together for a second glance.

But, after the fact, never looking back.

I thought it was you (was it really?), No.
I can’t be sure, time rolls on and we go
until we’re both down past anyway, gone;
your spirit left while mine stayed so long.

I thought it was you (does it matter?) No.
An impression in blue planted will grow
roots, dreams skin tight about your chest
ample swell my thoughts to do the rest.

Thought it was you (and it could’ve been),
the way my stomach flip-flopped inside
my heart trying to make itself be seen,
as love boxed twelve rounds with pride
and won, left me longing for some prize
from the Angel of yesterday’s enterprise.

Wednesday, 24 June 2020

Wood For Brains, Shit For Trees

Wood For Brains, Shit For Trees

Here bide The Silent; be very afraid if you can:

they’re drifting downstream on flotsam and jetsam

between world wars, empty vessels rattling beads,

Mary Whitehouse brigade spread like toxic weeds,

muster apathy for these dull grey porridge wits

wondering lost, boneheads in black forest pits

iced with simple vanilla thoughts, soft and slick

their shoes, muck caked with gateaux so thick

that elderberry trees shit leaves for their books.

Slow-draw and shoot you with blank smug looks,

given to illiterate ignorant scum-suds confessions,

deliver tombstone chat-show fag packet life lessons

from old repurposed thrice weekly TV soapboxes,

boast fuck-me-don’t effects; piss-poor direction

of treasured white luvvie actors emoting candyfloss

concoctions, reaching out to sooth minds of dross.

Rot. Yes, all lives matter but mine more than yours

they mumble, spitting grit through false teeth;

gobfuls of puree mashed tin corned beef hash

leftovers, rank ham shank, yellow pea fishy pie,

grey bitty eggs left overnight to decay and die,

bald thick kidney lumps where steak should be

chew over this morning’s minced brains for tea.

Distant since conception, making piss not love,

true blue respect fits them like hand in glove,

stamp hard on Beatles, lay Stones with blame,

say Dylan invented their fucking walking frame,

wish Pistols were never born for all sex is porn,

lent crochet hooks to weave that crown of thorns

then watched him dance without a second glance

for all they are saying is give shit a chance.

Listen to them grizzle, don’t ever give it a rest;

likely contestants for The Eurovision Bore Contest

if they hadn’t voted leave us their fucking mess

to sort out much-laters. Just don’t take any breath

between bollocks; lecture us more about waste not

wipe snot be thankful for what little’s given or got

and aren’t they paid too much for kicking a ball

disgraceful it should be earned or not paid at all

their fault they’re on drugs and getting the dole:

These slack tongued slap shoe stick not twisters,

don’t think they won’t beat it into you with slippers,

belts, braces and wooden spoons that give and give

and give until they shatter; well let fly with fists,

boot sense into the little shit should it try to resist

then cut to Henman Hill to see slack jaw waves,

blankets of cheering for those second rate graves.

Come the fading of the light, see them snivel, gripe

I was right to be colour blind, to leave nothing behind

except my selective amnesia, voting slips that grind

your children’s children’s bones and make my bread

to dip in your generation’s gravy until I’m dead.

Here bide The Silent; now snub them out of spite,

they contribute nothing but imperial tons of shite.

Sunday, 21 June 2020



Oh, I like walking in the dark, it’s mysterious,
Mr Chesterton. Gnarled bent roots pushing up,
soaking hard mud with swelling rain, ripe veins
mole-bore darkling tunnels, ripping into crust.

I’m always lush day-dreaming, it’s so exciting,
beats in temptation, blood rush me quicksilver
thunderstorming my bastille, breaching my hill
in wolf-scent, clawing earth and shatter chains.

Lay me down on beds of late scarlet pimpernel
nests, take breath, rest me on pressing oceans
of sweeping dusk gold autumn brown grasses,
bubble in gentle shapes. Now we’ll flash floods,

lie back in exotic alphabets, melting in X and Y
under pinking sky. Hooks and eyes part and fly
so swiftly; helped by our hands, wave goodbye
to restraint, chuck away good intent; whispers

nothings nonsense, goose shivers, quickening
until the fruit, red-ripe and wind-fallen, oozes
tart juice on the fingers, touch to our tongues,
open and peeling the flimsy lace skin, now feel

how time is nothing real pressed inside, warm
ferments our sipped sweet ciders shared, drunk
corked then sleep entwined in blackberry briars
parted; just only satisfied, brief quench my fire.

Oh, yes, Mr Chesterton, how walking in the dark
reminds me, brings you back, recaptures sparks
that blow me softly through your greying ember
where red hot pokers bloom in late November.

Monday, 15 June 2020

Dark Matter

Dark Matter

You cannot breathe in space; are surrounded

by more dark matter than stars, threatening,

out there above you, cumulus of old cosmos,

massing in blackening clusters, soaking light,

grim, hungover boulders pivot upon tiny levers

gather in grey thunderclouds, awaiting the day,

colossal on catacliff edges, with sheer potential

to drop, plummet, smash and crush. Impassive

grind the rock molars, pounding fragile vessels,

tiny white-blue sphere set against dark oceans

mounts little defence for there is none to offer.

No tweeting can contact something this far out

or hope to move it, no mass rallies, fists shaken,

no deeply moving messages, passionate speech;

it is too late; now beyond reach of any conceit.

This gravity cannot be explained, reasoned with:

Binds universes together or tears them apart,

it takes stellar velocity, one observable spark.

Into deep sea trenches tossed statues tumbling,

hear screams of shameful empires crumbling.

Friday, 12 June 2020

Mix Tape

Mix Tape

Take into your hand drifting wisps

from within her mind’s echoing caves,

 fragments of shared song, brief snatch

of melody, place alongside your own,

then blend together the harmony lost,

segued into a third stinging memory.

Picture him kneeling for long hours,

listening for blends, fading in and out,

your altar boy, tuned into life’s ways

forever. Well, days stack up the days

into years before even you’ve noticed

and cruel how casual refrains punish,

pushing us off, forwards then so away

from where anybody might wish to be.

But to regain a moment, to set down,

we'd crouch in deliberate concentration

for when it’s gone, at least taste again

brief frozen in songs our regrets long,

where tape hiss echoes your first kiss,

still sweet upon the beckoning breeze;

tart in blooming of warm spring days.

When our time unrolled in front forever

each immaculate sequence might hint,

leave clues, recall a golden something.

Listen well, make your careful choices,

where melodies sung recall our voices

shiver, hanging threads by river banks

of love’s words forgotten brought back,

replayed, rewound for only both to see.

Watch gears and cassette spindles turn,

we'll hear CD engines groan and churn,

shed tears that something lost will burn.

Another Flip for Dominic

Another Flip for Dominic

Rules that govern your lives hardly being right
or apply to me at all; prisms forever bend light,
they can be multiversial, because…well, quantum.
It’s all for your own good, I solve those problems
that riff raff never understand, or even really feel
and who breaks a butterfly effect upon a wheel?

Think seventies LP covers; dark sides of moons
filling living rooms, or coal in tubs in bathrooms
if you can, while I tip my hat to the tips of bergs
like ice, baby, every trip taken is one you’d spurn,
stay in, learn…ah, quantum, have you even the wit
to see it’s lockdown, Jim, but not as we know it?

Controversial? No, no, I won’t accept that, I exist
only to become the dominant species. Take risks:
pick up sticks, bang on your shitty saucepan lids,
howl loudly into the dreadful night and be rid
of plague. That’s…quantum - all right for some
with access to sliding doors like mine and run

like a sort of time-slip slip-stream, beyond you.
Did you dream it? Don’t think you haven’t a clue
why you don’t but I do, it’ll cause what small mind
you have to spontaneously combust, in such time
as I’ve watched events jump over the horizon
so…quantum, gone in puffs of smoke and grime

free wheeling across the land 276 miles or more,
warped there and back while you, locked indoors,
being in arrears to society; existential viral threats
crawling from slime up through mountains of debt
won’t burst this Westminster bubble - so applaud
er…quantum, courtesy of your betters and lords.

Don’t see me for dust or clock my light-speeding
past 10,000 I don’t care homes - full of grieving
sons, daughters, those younger tearful front-line
unprecedented testimonies; mine was no crime
I’m only ramping up the, ah…quantum. Driving
responsibly, legally and with integrity. Surviving

famines, floods and plague. Now queue forever
like fuckwits, bang sticks on tin pans together
outside scum alley, watch your old fart zimmer
up and down his garden, and roger that; dither
in your Poundlands, knife each other for bog roll:
quantum. To victors the spoils, the rest, the dole.

It’s for your own good, this 60 parsec round trip
to Barnard Star, my eyesight still giving you gyp
yet still refuse to see it, because, well…quantum
acts blindly, never try to analyse what’s wrong;
choke all plebs, in your bed and brexits sit in shit
voting for another flip of your very own Dominic.

Friday, 5 June 2020

Don’t Think About It Too Closely

Don’t Think About It Too Closely

I can’t think
that you ever felt love
when you tell me
all women cut after leaving.
Never look back,
some scratching words like that.

I mirror your smile
but backwards,
trust in you to scissor
our photos in two,
seen it in cheap afternoon films
on those cheap afternoon channels,
where a jilted serial kidnapper,
always someone recently close,
holes himself in a rotting windmill
of her pinboard ticker tape mind.

Never short of hostages on TV,
zoom into charcoal cookie-cutter
mascara streaks then fade to white.
She’s so self published,
bottled her vanity potions
of half wept tears,
for the coma’s so deep dug
in this next partner
that he'd sleep to miss the wake.

Rip out his one pound of flesh,
slash it up fifty percent,
to sell minced heart bits.
Mix oatmeal and stir in end-trails;
straight, forward-facing paths,
no bends, no kinks, no surprises,
no divergence in a yellow wood:
watch her tear with careless scorn
along the dotted line and torn.

I can’t think
that you ever knew love
when you can’t tell me
of those left in your backwash,
nor show any line of diary
that you’d never write,
blank cards decay at birthdays
unbought, left on shelves
to mustard yellow.
Never even unscrew a pen
to mark any cross on any map
where my end becomes
your start again.