Five guys

We get caught in the rain

On Northumberland Street


Shoulders bare

T-shirts and jeans

And I begin to worry

That you’ll be agitated


But you’re dancing

Washed up

Body quenched

Hair wet

Shoes ruined

Sodden socks

Clothes clinging

Limbs singing

Salt and sweat


And I don’t think twice

About how I feel

Having you here


My green drenched soil sodden toes

too warm too cold

and burnt dalmatian

find a home between your blind hands

and although your eyes see the damage

they feel, and feel nothing

and are truly blind

and the pressure

of your fingertip is homely

and the temperature is just right

Next Year

Months we spent savouring the subtle zest of sweat,

And the taste of patience sleeping in the gap between our lips.


Days we dedicated to burning each other’s limbs like kindling,

In fiery argument and fiery regret.


Hours we devoted to mapping each other’s faces,

Sketching past, present and future on cheek and chin.


Seconds we wasted blinking.




I watch quietly as the fields turn from green to gold whilst the corn feeds on our shared air and the earth continues, ignorant to its own incredible normality. I pick a blade of grass and split it with my nail, and then again until I’m holding tiny slivers of emerald in my hand and the weight is almost insignificant. The wind forces the dusty green in my palm to scatter and I am thinking of a time before now when she and I would lay upon this very earth and discuss our passions as if we were selling ourselves to one another.

Pretty little mess

She’s got that pretty plastic house

To match her pretty plastic chest

And a man who spends my years wages

On a pretty tight black dress

So he can rip it off her

And tie her to his desk

And with blunt tools he moulds her

To make her look her best

And she’s happy sitting pretty

In her pretty broken dress

Blissful in her misery

Pretty little mess

And everything’s pretty perfect

Until you ask her why

She’s pouring pills in vodka

Asking God to die

Silly pretty girl

You’ve made a silly little mess

You spilt some of your cocktail

On your pretty little dress

And now your pretty husband

He’s thirsty don’t you think

So how about you share

Some of your pretty little drink


And she was lonely again

It was dark outside and the trees were howling. She spent a couple of minutes staring at the ceiling. Counting sheep they say. No. She was counting limbs. And lungs and strings. Strings around necks. And flecks. Flecks of skin creeping in. In to a wound of a darker red. It bled and it bled. She said, as they screamed, it’s okay. You’ll be dead. Soon. And the moon. The moon created a spotlight. And it was just right. Just right for her to drift off slowly. And she was lonely again.

The Surgeon

He is pulling shoe laces through my skin

With his celestial fingers

To make the thread lift, recoil and tug

My already bruising flesh

And make a patchwork quilt

Of my sore body

He practices needlework and upholstery

And makes a masterpiece of my wounds

His hands play God at his own game

And beat him

And so he rips and grips my shell

Pulls stiff wrinkles from ribs

And dimples from hips

To make a more perfect me

In his own image.

Outside my body

I hold my arm up to the light

From the cheap unscented scented candle

And the pain of that night has almost faded

And the feelings that dripped over the edges like wax

Are nearly all dried up

Your eyes still burn though

Thick smoky black clouds

So, I cover myself

With silk and cotton and cashmere

Putting pretty things over ugly scars

Proof of what you didn’t do but think you did

When broken glass spread like an incoming tide

A forest stitched upon tendon, in white thread

A silhouette of lace snaking below my elbow

When 6am hurt more than anything

And our salty eyes bruised

When the distance grew larger than us

Than our ability to piece it together

So, we lay far apart planning ways to fill the gap

Between my thigh and your arm

And your arm and my brittle blood

And we did it, didn’t we?

So now, looking down to pencil marks

A children’s drawing on my skin

It remains a memory of harder, sharper times

Flames burning brighter now

Outside my body