Archive for April, 2013|Monthly archive page

30 Poems in 30 Days – Poem #20

In Uncategorized on April 20, 2013 at 8:46 pm

Poem #20 

For Jack – ii.

Strength is not about muscle or your gym routine.

It’s about how hard you love,
how far your voice carries across wind battered storms –
you don’t ever need to change who you are.

Be your sarcastic, close to the bone, cutting humoured self.
Those who can’t handle it aren’t worth your time.

Don’t let anyone waste your time –
it is running out faster than either of us could ever imagine.

Right now we are young,
the sun is jealous of our youth,
but it has learnt to burn brighter than our bodies have ever tried to.

I am tired of us wasting ourselves
on people who use others as stepping stones,
on days that won’t hold us properly, that throw us to the night

all chewed up

we have been raw for too long,
let’s simmer in this summer heat that’s just about to settle –

if we can’t make them love us,
we will love ourselves until there is no room for their praise;
until they begin to love the way we love,
want to love their own insecurities the way we love ours –

with utter abandon,
unadulterated admiration.

The sun keeps shifting in the sky because it is laughing at our happiness,
visits Australia before rising on a new day and still we love ourselves silly,
like we can see the future

and all the people who didn’t love us like they were supposed to
are somewhere in the back of a theatre,
trying to get tickets to see our sold out show.

Can you feel the weight of their dead eyes lifting from your broad shoulders?

If it ever gets too much – remember
our bedroom walls are paper thin and I can hear it if you say my name.
I am one wall away, praying for you to love yourself harder than anyone else will ever dare.

30 Poems in 30 Days – Poem #19

In Uncategorized on April 20, 2013 at 8:42 pm

Poem #19

For Jack

Jack, I want you to own every part of yourself:
black hair, new glasses, Bromley postcode.
I want you to go to sleep at night and say you made the day bend to the shape of your tongue.

You are like the piri-piri sauce on Nandos chicken,
a Coal burger too full to fit in your mouth, 
Bill’s skinned chips.

(I don’t know why all my similes for you are food related;
maybe we should reassess our biscuit fuelled diet.)

You’re like tea on Saturday mornings,
leftover Dominos on a Sunday, nursing a Lemmy hangover
with cold dough balls.

You are like deadline dissertation day,
handing it in, all threaded,
before going to the Impy to start celebrations.

Sometimes I find a quote which I want to shout at you through the walls.

Think of life as a Moleskin notebook,
there are so many pages yet to fill
how can you be unsatisfied with it when you don’t know what’s to come?

Budapest should still be throbbing in your throat,
the city’s architecture a polaroid against your closed eyes.

You will visit so many more cities.
In one of them,
there is a person who will tie themselves to your life and refuse to ever leave.

So get your bucket list,
add on the one thing you’ve always been scared to dream of doing,
tell me when it’s done.


30 Poems in 30 Days – Poem #18

In Uncategorized on April 18, 2013 at 10:30 pm

Poem #18

As I walk under an expansive night sky, 
poetry is forming itself in my gut whilst the tree’s shadows shake:
a rousing rumba for midnight.

There is no need for the word apology in this language.

30 Poems in 30 Days – Poem #17

In Uncategorized on April 17, 2013 at 10:54 pm

Poem #17

After the funeral, she grips onto open air as if there are ghosts hanging from ceiling fans just in front of her. Her cries are empty, soundless, all in the eyes, as if the dead stole her voice when they went. Her voice is buried alive, and everything she wanted to say to them is rotting in between the fingers on their clasped hands.

30 Poems in 30 Days – Poem #16

In Uncategorized on April 16, 2013 at 10:44 pm

Poem #16

Who taught your fingers to grasp for sunlight in rain storms?

When you flirted with my fifty five year old nurse as she gave me the test results,
fear tasted like sugar on my tongue.

I know you use humour to hide behind,
repeat the patterns of other people’s giggles when you have tired of counting sheep to get to sleep.

You don’t do heavy.
Our conversations are escape slides over the top of plane wings.

But sometimes, I want to peel the glaze from your eyes,
ask how you feel when you imagine my dying.

I know that some days the world is a black hole,
you – one person standing on the edge of it.

Sometimes you reach out your fingers and there is no sunlight,
it is all thunder,

striking the same finger on the same hand by the same flooded piece of land.

30 Poems in 30 Days – Poem #15

In Uncategorized on April 16, 2013 at 10:08 am

Poem #15

It is in a car when I’m nearing twenty that you talk of dance halls
and I remember once you were younger than I am now.

I could replace my local club with an Irish lane,
dirt roads and older brothers dropping you off at the top of them.

Before long, we both become a wave in a sea of flailing bodies.
I wish I knew how to waltz in a cocktail dress.

Maybe I can teach you generic drum and bass moves
after you whirl me around our static living room.

My era all seems so cheap, so of the moment,
I want black and white polaroid snaps not Instagram memories of nights I’d care to forget.

I have never been drunk in your presence,
we know how vodka strips skies of stars.

I wish you had once met me without knowing I was your daughter,
so I could see the brazen presence of youth in your walk.

I guess once you thought you would never age,
until it clamped your hips and broke your back.

Your spine is a line of memories,
vertebrates like rings around a tree’s bark.

I am starting to fear death,
starting to see blotted mistakes for stars.

I am starting to feel loss at the back of my throat when I wake,
like too much salt on seaside holidays.

And when the day bows to another sunrise,
it looks like a mother penguin regurgitating memories into the folds of night,

how did you hide all this from me before?

30 Poems in 30 Days – Poems #13 – #14

In Uncategorized on April 16, 2013 at 10:05 am

Poem #13

On a crackled call when you were on a drunk night out and I was in a house with thin walls so intimate talk had to be hushed, you told me you loved me.
I wish you’d have paid more attention to the writer in me – that you knew I’d have to fumble a romantic sentence about cracked phone lines indicating the moment of understanding.

Wish you’d have been more caring to do it in a picturesque setting or with more gusto so I could actually have believed it.
Did you not know I would have to see what you were wearing to make this meaningful?

I have my eyes closed, head resting against a white wall, just over my headboard. Your voice is filler in my own head – the crackle reminds me of road works, waking me from a deep sleep, I’m not sure I want to be roused from.

Poem #14

She is not looking for love, she is looking for unbuttoned shirts,
a mouth as askew as ties after a 9-5

ten pm – she dances like she knows the blues intimately, like last week she brought them home, kicked off her black stilettos, curled up with them on the tiled kitchen floor. The next day, she sang them in the shower, her voice rising through steam and fogged glass sheets – proclaiming an untold youth to a mirror who was tired of looking at her. Towel drying her badly conditioned hair with a crisp white towel, pulled from the heating rack to the side.

30 Poems in 30 Days – Poems #10 – #12

In Uncategorized on April 16, 2013 at 10:02 am

Poem #10

We nearly kissed on a central line train. Stood still at Bank
I breathed your grey scarf like it was the morning after the apocalypse.
Everything about you was dust ridden.

Everything about me was faulty,
picking through the remains of an annihilated city,
searching for food in the cashmere around your neck.

Poem #11

I have carved out a place for you to sit in my excuse for a body.
Reserved for 5.35 am when morning is that bit too far away.
Or when you enter the house, realise you haven’t spoken to anyone all day,
then crawl into your pit of a bed without even turning the lights on.

This is for the place inside your head you go to,
sometimes for daily drop ins, other times for whole weeks.
Can I ask where your eyes retreat in that period?
And when you return, where do you hide those hollowed caves as you laugh?

Poem #12

We will settle into this all,
learn how to hold hands without them becoming clammy,
which laughs are nervous and which are genuine.

The day you see me angry,
do not worry – I have become comfortable enough to show you bared teeth,
in the knowledge this ugly will not put you off.

30 Poems in 30 Days – Poems #7 – #9

In Uncategorized on April 16, 2013 at 9:58 am

Poem #7

Her mouth was the colour of copper coins.
When she spoke, worlds yet to be discovered
shuddered in the wake of her words.

Poem #8

She tasted like magazine print.

Poem #9

Today, I aim to be sophisticated.
I’m wearing a thirty pound blazer and black platform shoes, my aim
is to be sophisticated.

My friend need not remind me of the night I tried to be classy:
sent snapchats at 6am of day breaking,
entered our house, rested in his room before reaching mine
and making my bed a cocoon until well into the next evening.
Regardless, today I am trying to be sophisticated.

First day as an intern,
hiding my potty mouth behind newly cut hair.
Smile, be confident, leave early.

What actually occurs:
I am standing outside St Paul’s station realising I should have got out at Bank,
attempting to reach a red pin on Google Maps.

It decides to rain,
It decides to rain so hard it feels like there is a water park in the sky,
I am underneath the waves.

After a twelve minute swim, I am standing outside a glass building with revolving doors,
the type of place where people hire other people to hold umbrellas for them
as they get out of black cabs.

There is water dripping from my nose,
as if it were a ski slope and the rain a skier snowploughing to the bottom.
I walk in with confidence,
blushing on the inside, a scarlet red reserved for first fights and first loves.

There is no mirror in the lift – who would put a lift with no mirrors in a building made of glass?

Floor Seven – I reach their reception, give my name, she types it in,
then looks up “it’s bad weather today isn’t it?”
My plug hole of a mouth gurgles a response.
“Do you want to use the toilet? It’s just to your right.”
I skulk to the ladies, sophistication in tatters, along with my running eye-liner.

30 Poems in 30 days – Poem #6

In Uncategorized on April 6, 2013 at 6:21 pm

Freewrite on the Bakerloo Line from Waterloo

Poem #6


You told me stories about tribes worshipping moons, tides and skinned animals around open fires.

I held you up to the dimly lit light of the bar,
thinking you were a vision of ecstasy too good for me to extract pleasure from.

I learnt not to worship you the day you accidentally swore in front of your five year old niece.
I was no longer constrained by what I could or couldn’t say to make you love me.

You are not a God, you are human, you are flawed.
I loved you more when I could slot our flaws in between each other.

I like it when you’re crumpled up paper, wonky eye liner lines,
keep being less than perfect please,
so you are real, like squashed oranges in lunch boxes.

I will still always hold your name like it is a prayer between lips,
talk to you in the middle of the night when you are not there,
try to forge closeness when we are far apart.

I have faith that you will answer me in time,
step back into view all fire and brimstone, as imperfect as unreflecting mirrors, blunt knives,
promises of lonely people, worshipping moons from flats they do not own.