Roll up! Roll up! Take a look at what I’ve got!
Cast your eyes over my perfect stock,
No better form exists in thought,
Tell me, ain’t she fucking hot.
Even dismantled, isn’t she fine,
Just looking at those eyes will blow your mind,
Her accent alone makes hips grind:
Pick and choose from your lego bride.
Use your gaze to strip her down,
Her clothes are but a false crown;
Your smile will soon over-ride her frown –
And while you’re waiting turn her round.
Roll up, Roll up, and look at them all!
Take this one’s hands, this one’s legs and create your doll,
Cut off her feet so that you stand tall,
She was born on her knees – she was born to crawl.
And breathe blood as the sweat returns to the sea,
This movement, these waves,
What new scabs formed old scars
Without the scratching of pen on paper
To help the skin calm.
It always has to come out – the heat-
A sheet of white-nothing a better victim
Than a man of hope and gums.
He cannot comprehend the interiority of a woman;
Least the desire that burns between her lips
Snarling to be filled.
If the moon is our mother
That makes the entrance to our temple
Something of a were-pussy
Whose power that thrums every day has been
Banished to legend and myth,
Leaving only tales of her madness
That howls to the skies
Once a month
When iron becomes a bitter and angry taste
For the caged beast
Whose story was rewritten and deleted
To make her a beauty
And a receptacle
For his pet
Who had trembled at first sight of her hunger,
And wondered if he was man enough
To full-fill her.
It’s not as simple as missing someone,
Because I always think the word implies
The drooping whiskers of a dejected puppy
Who can do nothing but wait
For his Master’s return.
I need a new word;
Because as much as I lack him
I need to be less full.
I need to be separate from the
Joy he brings to my heart
And the hot mess between my legs –
This man makes a hot mess of me
And scrambles my vision
Making egg yolk of my principles
While he’s making me breakfast.
For as much as we talk about art
With a capital A,
None of it seems to matter
When he puts his capital D in my matter,
Reducing the artist to an animal,
And an animal to a woman
When he plays with my hair
That falls across his cheekbones.
But in this lacking I meet again
My first love of words
And whip everything he inspires
Into the shape of sentences to fill in
The void on his side of the bed
That now seems like a hole
I could fall into.
So I fall instead into the angular embrace
Of the first love that
Saved me from being a hot mess of a human –
And putting words to everything else
Provides just enough distraction
From missing that which sends me reeling now
Into the warm arms of humanity,
Whose homogeny I thought to be oh so far beneath me
When making sense of the madness
Was the only madness I knew.
I wonder what the hell is going to make this better.
There’s dog years,
dog years of barking at the gates
of the hearts of those I loved
Sitting on my chest.
Perhaps that’s what my great-aunt meant
When she cried out at night
And said the devil himself was there,
Sitting on her stomach.
They say I’m strong,
Some say I am hard,
But I’m not.
I’m brittle like a candy cane
and left in the freezer,
forgotten in the cold,
Its colours violent against the ice that crowds it.
Its silence loud,
But never loud enough for it to be heard
As the freezer door is wrenched
And slammed shut.
I wonder what the hell is going to make this better.
I wonder if the day will ever arrive
When I can look at biceps
Twice the size as mine
And not wonder
When they’ll be positinoned around my throat.
When that deep voice
Will disembowel me.
When that heart will turn away.
The words in any language ring the same,
For anyone that has heard ‘I love you’ in a thousand tones
Knows it is never the words
That produce the love.
And I cling for evidence,
Like maddened Sherlock at his wit’s end,
To finish the game I play with myself,
Utterly convinced until it’s over
That they were playing me.
Checkmate. And nobody wins.
Because when the game is done
So all are the others –
All the playfulness,
All the laughter,
And all the love I refused
To let into my chest
Because of the dog years,
The dog years of torture,
Cutting their approach with the barbed wire
Je ne suis plus à –
Came in with light
Beams that grew from your chest
And made stars where once was wallpaper,
And they stretched and swayed
As you swayed into me, stretching the
Sensitivity I let you explore.
Those beams, they punctured the air,
Leaving me gasping for it,
And danced in the shadows
I had hidden somewhere
Between the cracks in my ribcage.
But they changed, my love,
I saw not that your beams grew from shadows long
Buried in yourself, too,
And those beams grew in links,
Creating chains around what you saw in me
And had once seen in yourself.
You didn’t see the man I saw,
The man that catches stars in the pools of his pupils –
But then, the danger of stars is they make the darkness beautiful.
You slid to a halt and cut me short
As I tried to move, as I have always done,
And as our distance became greater
Your grip became colder
And your beams felt like cold clay around my neck
Modelling my voice to reflect your own,
Pushing and prodding and ripping apart
What you try to avoid in yourself
Every time your gaze is drawn to the bottle neck.
Do not try and drown my potential with yours:
I was not made to reflect you,
A trophy of your worth;
I was made to be me.
Trophies are hollow
And you tried to gouge my light out
To find your own somewhere else,
And just by you being here,
I now know that love is not enough
When all the lights go out.
Her pout and her silence
Is a mystery to them
As they are drawn towards her heat
And her slick slopes,
Their daredevil nature willing her caves
To reveal treasures
As she swallows them
And clenches them,
Quivering as they quiver in her trap,
Lost to her unknown depths
The heatwave of an uncrossed leg hit them.
She is a god, surely,
For she grants both life and death
And creates in empty spaces
And promises unchartered lands
In a world where all is conquered.
They fall to their knees
In a begging position before the spread vault
In prayer and permission.
The jewels and the jungle
Buried beneath the fountainhead
Siren from the darkness
And coat their tips.
A god by her promise, and deliverer in the act,
As they throw pennies in fountains
She forges rivers
And hope for them
In her little deaths.
Pain scorches the tundra
When the rivers run red
And her promise is put behind her back
As she becomes human again;
She sees merely a shadow of herself
When she gazes in the mirror at the
Cotton chain dangling between her thighs
Marking her utility for creation
When all she seeks is destruction.
What power can be had when she cannot wet their soul;
What magic trick is left when she cannot swallow whole?
But no-one thinks to notice –
At cones and weathertops –
Party hats of millenia
Made concrete and sage –
But they do crumble,
Softly, like birthday cake,
Revealing core – molten? Ash?
And it blinks in the light
Like a babe.
How these titans crumble now
Revealing skin soft and sensitive
Underneath the heather patches;
Gales become breaths
Whispered through history –
A whisp of hair tucked like
A snowflake on a fingertip
By the same hands that grasped
And made those mountains crumble,
And made these mountains tumble.
The raw flesh of lava –
Her skin torned anew.
The harsh cry of a wolf,
He howled for his place.
Environments toppled and time
Twisted inside out
As these titans carved an egg
In the bubbling heart of
The mountain they destroyed
And within it they lay,
Quivering and gentle
Whithin a fragile shell
They built together
To do nothing endlessly,
To squirm and shiver
As she forced and he found the raw
Within themselves –
They touched and they barked
And they showed each other
Inside their own eggs,
Hers brittle, his fragile,
So much older than the home
They built around
In the time of a mountain
Like two embryos
Reeling from being birthed
In the eyes of the other –
Palms caught, fingers shook
And voices interweaving
Dared their egg to break
And dared the world to see
Two titans, softened,
Two titans – just human, really,
No matter how big their shadows.
When one matches the other.
I kept these papers for a reason
for when the circus disc slipped
and jarred somewhere in that lost space
between my heart and my tongue
and everything vibrates in that negativity
as if a lightning powered plastic rabbit
drills into me
like those things they use to break concrete
into manageable pieces
they say instability thrives in moonlight
but i prefer the streetlamps
for these hours
their sci-fi yolks that gathers the dead skin
growing dim as they crack
under timed glares
i cracked then
hiding from the silver swamp
with the man who spun discs
and i scribbled madness
on this paper
on the other side
that i kept
for when the claws
would bleed scribbles
into my blood
and scratch them into reality
when i was pretending to be new
we all have marks and designs
between my legs
are years of cave-drawings
imprints teasingly close
and begging to be touched
even when the page is turned
To create something about just one moment
In a year that threw them
Like Zeus and his bolts;
We watched them bundle together
And shoot across the sky,
Becoming giant tumbleweed of fire
The minute the next status was posted.
To create something about just one moment
Strikes against the lash of time
And the lies we tell ourselves
About how flat and linear it is –
What a beautiful view, like the rolling hills
Or the lapping ocean that begs to the sand
For just one more moment on its skin.
To capture a moment – no –
We don’t resurrect the dead here,
We don’t offer ghosts a place at breakfast
Unless their lust for croissants is strong enough
To bring them back – just for a moment.
To create something of a moment –
How? When all were created surrounding,
All had hearts and lungs and backdrops
I could have never plucked out of the
Of my own history of moments.
We create in each moment
Breath, pause, the meeting of desires
Singing from the midnight pools
Of another astroturf of goosebumps.
I play not god,
For it is only memory of moments I can create,
And not them themselves,
And why paint the silver lining of a cloud’s belly
That has already passed.
This year was one not of moments
But of rhthyms,
From the sound of heels on cobbles
To the swaying hips of a Brazilian on heat,
From a laugh that circled
Much like Jesus’ crown
Above a group of friends.
From arched backs and the
Timbre of sweetness dripped
To the devils’ foreheads locked-
Even shadows move and promise never to stay
Once the sun has danced them on.
All of these rhythms rippled
Through not just one moment
But through the beat that bellows
From the brimming chests
Of those, who with others,
Dance their way home.
What a woman does on her own…
This one smokes.
This one listens
To the thrum of electricity.
This one feels the table cutting into her leg
And has no desire to move it.
This one looks at the corner of a space too small
Hoping the force of her gaze
Can thrust it outwards.
This one tries to feel,
Alone she tries to feel.
Is that not what a human does on their own,
Never mind a woman.
This one thinks
She should be thinking of her family,
She should be thinking of her job,
She should be thinking about eating a third meal.
She should be thinking.
And as she thinks she should be thinking
She wonders really what thoughts are
And if, when not guided by the invisible hands
Of all other judgements and perceptions and expectations
If thoughts really exist at all,
Because are not those good thoughts we qualify as expansive
Thoughts of other judgements, other perceptions, other expectations.
Misses her lover in her body,
Feels a loss
And wonders if that is love
And wonders if she is at all capable
Of doing anything
That makes her a woman
On her own.