Verse

Sleeping love

You’ve fallen perfect

composed in my sight

like a monumental piece of grain

a beautiful sage.

Perfect.
 

In my wicked greed, I want you to stay asleep.
 

From every direction I see,

every way I turn you,

you’re something I wanted, something I begged for

some day, some time,

down the line.

Perfect.

 

I can dazzle all the world’s love your way, but you won’t stay.

You’ll awake.

 

I know,

I know, that the thing that binds my sight

to you is your glorious flight.

Your wake.

You looking right through me

at something far,

somewhere I don’t belong.

 

I know.

I fear.

I feel.
 

It’s the only way.

So, my beauty, without me,

go sail away.

   
 

Image – The Sleeping Man of Oguri Kohei by Nemuru Otoko, 1996

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Verse

The night of September twenty third

And I felt you break 

showering my secrets 

with a hundred million stars 

cast out new

throbbing to be

someone,

something,

a speck in the great, big sea.

 

 

Image – Avery McCarthy

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Verse

Excuses

The way I’m sitting,

the robe,

the cold,

the bowl being off-centre on the table.
 

The bladder- it’s always half full, half empty,

half full, I forget.

The cat’s whiskers being glorious,

the water boiling,

the long dust of drafting all this on the keys again.
 

The tingles on my back,

the unwatered plant- it looks like a wretched desert,

the dry patch on the back of my throat,

the water being too hot.
 

Peeing.

The preoccupation with how often I urinate,

the post-urination chill up the spine.
 

The palm trees against the pale pink sky being too good to not photograph-

being too cliche to photograph, on the other hand.

How the page absorbs ink making blotches marking my hesitations.

Him, sleeping.
 

The loneliness flickering in the light bulbs of the four a.m. train, 

and the racket that it makes.

The situation of the world in general. A distant, worn out panic.

The horror of five a.m. and them waking up, to this, to make this.
 

This whole thing of being.
 

Anything, 

something, 

to look away from this thing-

this thing I don’t interrogate for honest words, 

this thing I don’t want to see.

The fear of me,

me,

me.  

                                                                                                     

Image source unknown

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Verse

Of sunsets and pain in paradise 

The sun is burning anyway;

it doesn’t need more pain.

Earthly love

is hardly ever a bargain.
 

Life cuts

as often as it wets our hearts

with soft clouds

dipped in orange dyed lagoon sunsets.
 

And we are left beating

with the fish washed fresh

off the warm waters

at some faraway paradise bay.

           
                     

Image by Andy Moine

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Line

The one thing

No one knows freedom like a slave.

         

  Image – Bernd & Hilla Becher, photographic print 2004

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Verse

The most important night of the year 

Things laid out carefully for the most important night of the year;

a private place hanging from the edge of an island,

fireworks,

dream pills,

a few heads that can talk and laugh,

a menu with options.

 

Bottled sparkles

to fill up the holes between conversation

with stars,

and light up the crystals lost in eyes.

 

Nevertheless,

it was the same.

 

In the morning between rocks, seashells, open bottles and sand

there were people broken

ordinary

by the quiet horror of

another day.

                                         

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Human thing 

This human thing,

it cuts:

it heals, it hurts:

it is the thing that man’s god hates the most.

This human thing

is a thing of shame and miles and miles of sunshine.

This human thing,

is a thing that sang,

made breakfast,

watched Netflix

and at pictures of beautiful flats;

played Pokemon Go,

shopped for Christmas,

wept,

broke

apart,

loved and

hoped

while cities of ants burnt

with their secret mines of gold.

Then everything

fell slowly

and bewilderingly apart

till humans things were dug open to find

a sun

that burns children, women and men

shooting air bombs.

 

The prophets are late,

or someone,

somewhere

lied.

         

Sunlight catches traces of smoke from fighting in Aleppo’s ancient souq by Tom Westcott

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