standing drinking-in quiet wet afternoon

a cigarette struggling between core-jet fingers

more and more and maw to mourn in her

, the wicker coffin lays

the azure flowers down

fishbowled in sleek black limousine

houndstooth flooring

slick with limoncello dreams

of bunting pinned

into cardboard gallery walls

a first love of many walks laconically,

waiting to be seen and involved, further,

absolved of a foreign headache

wakeful bashful broad-minded flowers nod confusedly

small yellow pups with pollen on their muzzles

pointing at each other out of haste

and fear

and too much iced tea

infused by Oklahoman sunshine

and nothing else.

the dog lost itself under the barn

of her shoulder bandage

she’s in the pocket of my double-wide trailer,

leaning-to in the plastic rain-sheeting blues

fleeting butterfly wingtip all spangled banner

and purple and new and untuned and hemless

cotton-soft push past unruly queue function

you see a tiny parapet and walk

on the concrete balustrade

gingerly, sipping another sun tea with far too much lemon

wincing, getting bittenkissed ferociously

by passing breeze and bottle-rocket spasms

left arm

calling-card left on table all embossed

in gothic lettering

brown-blue and pickled walnut down

washed in brine for 48 hours

and patted down before broiling

on breakfast food interior sleep roadhouse

selfishly stopping after only 33 hours on the road

in the bathroom the walls sing an off-key pink


another shower-head saunters through a barely-open door

and hums in green

a chorus from Appalachia

whose lyrics are far too sad for an evening of tenderness

popping, as it would, like the thin membrane of a street-peddler’s balloon

becoming nothing more than crude outline seething


I am standing, drinking in quiet wet afternoon

with more and more and more to mourn

my mouth and ears and feet and horn

fishbowled in that selfsame limousine.

Toes dovetailing outside sun whispers.

I sit cross legged watching the vacuum grow

and shift its sifted contents through her soft membrane.

I am in the back of another car, the first waiting at another

red light with another woman sitting behind another steering wheel.

The back axle feels loose and I think about trying to score.

Next in line is yellow.

Then green.

I pass watching dogs on both sides of the street and wish for rain.

The planets and plants thereon have been making a strange

low sucking sound for the last few weeks

and it's starting to interrupt my writing.

My transcriptions need new audio of the sucking sound.

I think about setting up a channel or selling CDs, then I remember the sucking sound of a CD tray loading and decide not to.

Instead I lean on the mahogany bannister for half an hour or more,

learning how to treat her with the respect I give my memories.

In the dark.

My back starts to ache, so I sit cross legged once more and contemplate the ceiling.

It is covered in some awful textured wallpaper.

I think about renting a steaming device in the fall.

I search online for price comparisons.

I decide not to.

Tapping a purdie shuffle on my front teeth with t

he nail of my right hand pinky brings

me to my senses, heightened by the

cannabis and caffeine coursing through me.

I feel shallow and mean about walking past another beggar

on the underground and wonder if the politics

of the word "beggar" have changed.

Is it a slur?

I aim to dance with an elderly woman at the community ball as penance.

Her hand feels papery and delicate in mine.

She has much more nimble feet then mine.

Her skin is much whiter than mine.

I wonder where she got them all.

I think about her life, knowing none of it; transposing my dreams

as her dreams and my weather as her weather.

It could be snowing on the day she dies.

I find myself hoping to find out, if only for the pyrrhic

animal victory of outlasting an elder.

Perhaps it will be fine.

Perhaps a light shower will roll through in the afternoon.

Perhaps toes dovetailing outside moon whispers.

done dusted palisades of hysterical wisteria

wander pots down down down balustrade sweeping mahogany groin

battlements all high and jumbled and fall in and downy gosling tie-dye rape fantasies

bishoping crab-claw sand-anchor ichor sticker-book sitting cross-legged in the driver seat

looking with blind fingers for the clutch dreaming

up a new passion play resolving bunyan's inner turmoil with feather-stuffed epaulettes

fixed and fitted just past the dry dock segueing

pallid ballroom twist nations into fast spins nighttime car park phantasm drone

cosseting frantically finding tennis rackets behind petrol bombs and manifestos under goalpost jumpers

battered in egg temper winter sleet back and forth dosage increments automatically becoming lighter and

longer pastor passes the solstice with his left hand winking into the cracked lens cracked more than once

on more than one surface tightening the mortise love around one itchy lung exposing two fingers

of magnetised fluid pushing the other apart as if designed to repel the eighth

walking Bostonian

simmering basket case loaf yinyangtackle box softly backing into an alternative culture

dovetailing fronds of spaghetti mosses into missed pigeonholes from tired driver

zero-contract delivery cleverly cartooned as talented

rust and true devotion in some cartographic caricature carried out with chocolate all around the mouth

in conjunction with sponsorship selling news stands and school-break cigarettes as red-herrings for progress

all plover-feathers and gannet-necks trash-compactor fine-line-marker directions

forming walls often walls on another street composing angle imperfections

graphic equalisation bot-trouble king-maker salted peanut stock-room boy

shitting once more for good luck and three thrills

thrice more so in time for CEO parking-space fast turn

nighttime space fear fantasy runs pocket driver neck dump

banal river flow

trundle young adult fiction

roam wastage green lantern blues

flavour sachet is in the name

ostracised for wearing a press pass visibly

and carrying and concealing the butter spoon

heart-shaped all welsh and new

the new dragon stands


alternating from hare to tortoise on the mower settings

sarcastically burping old flavour sachets of each variety under tinfoil lid and tinfoil hat and tinfoil tray

happy birthday

the world is anew again again again

the sea is a strategy

in blue

symphoniously yet


playing rocks as

pellets in some

yard-or-alley gamble

singing hair and

zero daisy-chains

aft of the quarterdeck

and a keyboard

spinning uncontrollably

around the wheel’s sink.

flashing back spit

and other childhood memories

of running it into her shins

before you

knew it might hurt

lost in the back lighting


of some unknown theatre in

an unknown town in an

unknown state in an unknown

province in an un

known nation

and a grey hand extending lightly

to take one petal from

the daisy-chain around my


he loves me

across the wall,

searching for dirt or

a bottle of wine to stand

in while waking up

into the conscious chain of

thoughts experienced by a


on the way

to the parlour:

“what of my cravat?”

“and the games?”

“will she make it?”

“the consistency?”

the path slipping by as


river of potash

the swan of the forest makes

a biennale

appearance and

speaks with the local

children in

a dialect the adults

have refused to admit

their knowledge of

(each all-hallow’s eve

the cormorants hang upside

down in a cultural exchange, the


stripping the branches clean,

pushing on the heron,

lighting out before the

parakeets on the southern edge,

blistering the top of the tortilla

sitting up sipping moonlight

dappled lavender oil on pillows

and throws

past glories

embroider the arms of

the functional

yet beautifully-carved chairs

of evening dancing

between binary palindromes

an argument standing

on her head,

whispering into

both ears at once

a rhythm emerging

already addicted

to heavy metals

and rare earth)

I pinch the flesh between

my thumb and forefinger,


that one

yeah, him (pointing)


the end.

He’s the one

that wrote something


and rong

too soft

yet too long

about yoghurt angels

and a zoo for suicides

all grey pandas and grey owls and grey lions and grey bears and grey eagles and

white wolves.

upset, the pitcher pissed

all over the floor

in the pantry

next to the spaghetti and onion ions


i was looking forward

to fighting prejuduce

hiding just over the same fucking horizon

that one

yeah, him (winking)


the end.

he put a duck in a barrel

and married his school sweetheart

his, not the duck’s

duck’s are terrible to one another

and he was far too kind

and gifted

a leap-year baby

who aged four times slower than the rest of us.

something has stolen the water.

perhaps it was him?

or the duck?

or the barrel?

or the openly defeated father washing his hand

at the tap in the street.

his daughter will marry his dopplegänger

and there is nothing more that he can say.

so he chats to the daisys growing up through

no-cracks in the pavement




for an answer

a petal falls from one white friend and

he smiles

nods slowly

gets up

pats his back pocket

looks over the rooftops for a second or so


and walks back to the house.

that one

yeah, him (crying)


the end.

walking backwards round the duck pond

apologising to his child

for not managing to carry her well

to be neither dad nor mule.

all the ducks are advertising

for barrels and

grey paint.

an audition is coming up

but it is the end of the school year,

so we sit down on a park bench

and try to talk about all the the things that trouble us.

We fail.

the backdrop loses a pin and the top

left hand corner starts fluttering in the shallow breeze

he takes a small gun from his hip,

replacing the one he was holding a moment before,

which he holsters at his ankle,

waves at the baby

smiles slowly

and shoots

a duck lays dead on the water

it is grey, with a greenish plumage around the throat

spotted with blood

and the theme tune starts to play

and the audience claps, although they’re unsure

and the camera pans out

and we see a flash of the man pointing the gun into the pram

then to his own temple

but hear no noise

that one

yeah, him (running)


the end.

fail me, words

and the softening of

whetstone runs to soapstone

all peach fuzz and sorries

the telephone separates

a tone into semi-tones

and is, for a second,


I overhear that conversation


“when did you get back from Barcelona?”

“you said last night last night.

That means Sunday.”

soapstone washes sandstone

with wet beach hands salt-sticky and sandy

running tired fingers through wet hair

in the cooler sea-breeze

tyres fling volcanic rock towards the

camera lens

and sandstone stands down

to the basalt garrison and its brass assault.

“You’ll need to buy a mouthpiece.”

Very old spit.

and she is

split open

towards the setting of the supermoon

the harvest all rained-on and rotten,

yet there is another mouth to feed.

Basalt succumbs to topsoil,

its molten core a foil for the folly of the blades above.

In men’s blood we find food

all oxygen-trapped and soft-handed

until that orange sign comes down.

The Big White Building.

The Big Brown Tower.

The Everlasting Smile.

The Year-Long Hour.

“Even his kid looked unsure.”

und I overhear that conversation


“when did you get back from Barcelona?”

“you said last night last night.

That means Sunday.”

and in C.P. we find a man whose blood feeds the soil.

The Men singing cry as they do, helped by their brothers at the bar.

To start the melody in the time-worn way, like thumb-marks on the fretboard.

But your acceptance of acceptance of scares me,

for it is too holy to look upon.

Topsoil washes in acid rain to bits,

and concrete plinths and unsafe cladding win, start sparking in fits

but enclosing the stone in a matrix once wet,

as ice now stiff and eerily dry.

as cryogenically-frozen our meat begins to cook,

let out for a day trip on the golden half of the nearest sun.

just for one look,

as sizzling as gold under a laser beam

we stare, withering as solar winds force

this iron-clad ball stop


and we are only just learning:

that our hands do not see in border disputes

that our eyes do not hear in wind-tunnel apps

that our ears do not feel with that monkey on our backs

that pestilence

that beauty

that horror

that shining mess

this assonance

this sublime

this murder

this boiling machine

et I overhear that conversation


“when did you get back from Barcelona?”

“you said last night last night.

That means Sunday.”

as the hearthstone meets the keystone

and they decide to marry

across the bridge the fire creeps

with the procession gingerly in toe

the confetti cannot get close enough to the bride

before catching alight

and the bridge falls

and the fire falls to the river

and the sediment catches the wind-blown confetti

and I find a large rock in the Cotswold quarry

with a small piece of petrified pink paper perched between two fault-lines

so I extract it, all the while sure I have overheard this conversation


and write “i love you” on it,

forgetting the capital.

torn oakfooted

planned parenthood

treated flags

pitying stare

our smalllegs crossed

like the tines of

an ancient rake

standing in an unsafe barn

the wind makes the houses


smalllegs crossed in nighttime pines

finding - and looking for -

hawk eggs

and a bracketed horizon

all wheels move equal weight

to that

and in that

and towards

the daft blackness

-laughing at its own reflection in day-

and the singing road

speaks to the

houses the wind


their summits dance

along in turbine shadows

the coyote, too close

to the car, laughs

at himself laughing

at his own reflection

it is echoed by the tyres,

which flick small pebbles at

my neighbours

-giving rise to ill will-

and the pebbles falling

play percussion for the

singing road,

balanced on the precipice

of the windspeaking houses

thousands of miles from the sea

thousands of years of ocean

thousands of acres of wheat

thousands of tears at the cryinggate

thousands of hands, holding

thousands of mugs, held


sippinglips puckered

at too-hot-coffee

at nuclear tea

thousands of bombs falling

waking thousands of teacup dreams

zyklon vowels



cycling powers








cola-bottle blues

seat-belt pulpit rheuminations

guttural worm noises

all our feet tap binary to


(I keep forgetting ZERO)

pussy-facing politics

masterful YouTube cartography

slit system-mapping trophies

Buddha leaning; iPhone repose.

“If he’d been here he’d’ve said the same.”

and after all I’m standing in a graveyard,

overlooking the jagged peaks that the last ice-age missed.

I am only the nicotine stain on his moustache

& the one gloved arthritic hand wandering (waving), drinking the landscape

with its palm.

a lone vowel paddles into the loch - its

mouth open

for rain and the pink

pint bottles lined up next

to the ashtray in the outdoor

lav start a low whistle.

Duck-egg blue

chips flake

off from the faux-Italian


supple limitless atrophying consonants

write and read psalms at the

extremities of his sleeping mouth …


K- k… K-K


P p P P p p p ppp……


Truthbetold - 

was summertime

and she.

blank bassinet.

top down endowment.


Erdoğan jumping.

Aztec quatrains.

was joking.

here, in: the exit.

Of the bar. Her heels left.

right on the bar.

and joking,


too little.


“there was this priest,

see?”, he starts…

All too often.

these quarter-pieces.

run away.

her hills.

his cupola.

amazing views.

package deal.

tower tour.


Brownstone joy.

And there was the punchline:

“the boys’ bent back!”

Her name means ‘patch’ in Lithuanian.

Her mother saw the patch of hair atop her head and shouted out.

It was not the first thing she saw.

After the fingers.

Blue in the gloaming medical lamps.

Tiny against her thigh.


Up start.

Their cradle gasolenes.

The trees leech ethanol.

White water in puddles runs.

Past masters take the lectern turn.

One open spot softens tallow candle gold.

eight eight eight eight eight eight eight hate.

Now isn’t the time to be pedantic; after hours.

I amn’t even listening now: my ears are taking sides.

This all passes as “work”, as does my shelter.

This all passes for “love”, as does my hand in hers.

This all passes for “past”, as does the sun banking, swerving.

This all passes for “passed”, as does and ending line.

This is not it.

Truth be told. 

shall I wander into the modern world with open?

shall I wander into the modern world with open?

yes - odd socks are sexy.

I am scarcely passive in the exchange. I hope.

And will she wash my privates when I no longer know what it’s worth?

no - blind alleyways don’t always.

All the hills we can hold hands.


Our fingers petting small crackling in the rock as hairs and liars.

One day and a half sometime we’ll have a dog.

yes - much of the time I can only concentrate on concentrated.


And all the young shoots screw up to us over mooky dim moonlight shade saddles.

Violins cave in and burp like wolves. All the pups suckle at once and.

I find a shrivelled she-wolf. Smiling.

She to me and me to she the sound of the snow under my boots.

makes me position my right hip. Right.

And will we one day kneel and talk to gods?

Jenever in our mouths and the can of a new year opening. Small hiss. Nice.

no - don’t eat that. That’s so rancid. Trust me - I’ve eaten enough of these to know.

And our two mouths look into each other for an hour or. More the sun rises.

And will the togetherness fruit?

yes - maybe six eyes are better than four. Ask a bee. Or a caterwaller. Cold-calling-cat-caller.

“HEY BABY! You turn me on!”

My TV is talking to the remote again. I, trash-heap.

no - there can be no smell with a nose-clip but.

And - shall we pour out into the streets to look into the elect?

And - is there enough of us to pander to?

And - is the door closing at the same time as the microwave popping a sign?

And - will the milkman deliver anything I want him to, now that I am grown?

And - does there have to be a point to a class-passed paper?

Will the sidewalk ever?

no - with all my might there may be no other tie.

I don’t doubt she found her cave.

I mine. Find rocks. Build city. Fall down.

All fall. Like so many legs into an open pit.

And the tire tracks stop here.

Will we ever get to know the?

yes - ball bearings often look square when measured against park bench shadows.

no - we are not tomorrow going.

yes - her ear looks pleased with.

no - we will ever

geraniums - 

why won’t it grow


we shall wait

and all shall be well

the geraniums can’t speak

the moon has captured them

between the left and the right


I wanted to step in and show

some sort of disc to the soft peach


so that they could paint themselves.

They turned out not to be


at all.

So it Gave Me a Link - 

so it gave me a link

there, many-brained, Moloch is sat speed-dating

twisting the tablecloth and hoping the stain on his shirt isn’t period blood

- it has been a long time -

and the stone chairs are all the same as the deck chairs in Whitstable Bay, only brighter, with more fingerprints in their surfaces.

so it gave me a link

back beyond the sky-stem to a system of figurative names

and a wild dark punchy dream of mirror-bound depravity

so it gave me a link

watching them sleeping on the street in rags and bags

and coating myself in poundcoins in the vain hope of staying warm and safe and whole and me

so it gave me a link

come trotting out one day and you’ll see the spot where he fell

they shouldn’t have been racing

they’d been doing pills in the park

he was unsteady on the rooftop

there was fresh bitumen all over his jeans

so it gave me a link

and all the cyclamen seem to know something I don’t

and for some reason the parting clouds look somewhat matte, even in light relief

and I am lightly relieved when I can fall back asleep

and the light-cord cautiously knots itself higher and higher in the night

and one eye always opens before the other, cut

so it gives me a link.


Hello – my name’s James. I have spent the last few months collating and compiling various scattered and fragmentary notes I made while living and working in a geographically marginalised society in the Northern Hemisphere, here code-named ‘Y’. The pieces I am about to read have been collected sporadically, sometimes in rushed circumstances and settings such as street-corners and drive-in churches, and others more lengthily in lounges and home-offices, over the last three years. Five years would be closer to the truth, but I don’t trust odd numbers.

I have used the question and answer structure with liberty and abandon, building various fragments in as poorly constructed stepping-stones. You don’t need to know these facets of my research - I am only telling you this up front in order to set you very slightly on edge.

Question 1: why question?

Answer 1 – Deke, aged 41: "Ah. What? A question. A statement? I'd say fear is a chance. To ask. Try traversing the dot under the hook. Round the corner there. Catty-corner. I'll see you later."


Bio Piece 1 – Deke:

Born: Lenexa, 1970

Star-sign: Co-axial Cable

Birthstone: Pumice

Weight: 90kg

Wait: 4 seconds prior to talking

Prevailing emotion: taught concern

Phobias: dot matrices


Answer 2: "Am I? Who's in charge of its edges? Each fissure might show me a loose nail holding up the gilt-framed mirror. I'll see me later?"

Question 2 – Deke, aged 41: why defend?


Artefact Piece 1: Conch Shell

5 inches long, rosy peach in colour yet pearly grey inside. Someone has removed the spines of the shell in order to smooth the back ridge. The 8 small spikes are arranged, nestled in the shag of the green carpet, against the soot-stained forehead of the hematite fireplace. They sit and watch, at times being balanced against their smooth former points of connection to be photographed or for the carpet to be cleaned.


Question 3: why protect?

Answer 3 – Aneka, aged 29: “there’s a dust-cloud on the horizon. Some of its outer tendrils drip off as lions, running. A many a grey paw claps the earth. All our legs are becoming fizzy in our pants. A flat stone takes over the balls of my feet. My island is under attack. The trees begin to howl at their own photosynthesis, wishing to be petrified. Do you run? yes toward? no away?”


Bio Piece 2 – Aneka, aged 29:

“I was born in that house there. The one with the yellow circles on the door. I have an older sister and a younger brother. My mother was into studying crystals. My father ran a bottle-washing plant up there by the correctional facility. He used to employ a lot of ex-cons. He’s retired now. I went to school in Y and then off to college not far from here. I met my boyfriend in junior high. He died in a car wreck when we were both 19. My brother was driving but survived. Where were we? Me? Oh.”


Question 4: , and what?

Answer 4 – Aneka, aged 29: “, and, all soft-taped to the felt, it is the thing held together by sitting under my collection of hats. Who should I point the microphone towards? Any more?”


Memory Fragment 1 - Mine: It was hot. Unfathomably hot. Dry heat that made one’s ears ache. I saw Jim coming around the limestone edge of the house in his underwear. Past the inlaid woodwork. A ship’s wheel, or stern. Or was he in a shirt? I can’t remember. All that matters is that his feet were tracing the same pattern I had sensed when he walked out of his office at the university close to Y six months earlier. There had been one cold day that torpid summer. He had been wearing a similar shirt. Or had I?


Question 5: what are we thinking in?

Answer 5 – Jim, aged 63: a projector. Or a series of them. I am projecting this sentiment into the ether around me as I talk. I am, I think, aware of my environment. It looks as if it holds water. And releases it. I cannot find where it has all come from as my blood and birth are alien to me. I could be anything. My environment and the thing that passes for “me” are linked, perhaps, in a vaudevillian embrace that makes Al Jolson’s face turn white. I am hugged and being hugged by the violence of dead suns. It’s all heating up. We’ve all got an agenda - an agenda of wakefulness that, here, becomes an agenda of wanting-ness. I want my space. You want yours. The concept of “my space” is preposterous. There is no space unless it is there to touch, and my fingers and thumbs and toes are confused by the profusion of complicit particles. There is a bullet making contact with a child’s head somewhere, in my name, and my name means nothing. My sound, however, “means” something as it ties this body to the structure of the universe, loosely. It is all knots and paradoxes, and joy and fear, until we start to buzz in a lower range of hertz. More of you is filling the CRT screen than me. Wide sockets point electricity back towards the sun. Or moon.


Question 6: how archive?

Answer 6 – Jim, aged 63: an empty hard drive. a dry mouth and salty eyes. “what’s it like, this series about desperation?” This fear is within itself, looking out through kaleidoscopic prime lenses. I was heard because I was heard muttering I was here. I am moving around the seventh portion of desert with an avuncularity that verges on ridicule. You do not need to know my uncle to know this, I am merely telling you for the exposition of his petroleum-covered lips. I am trying to connect with his photograph, but a concertina of justified (left) images keep passing water through my screen. I am always looking up into the base of puddles, dreaming about what the world might be again. Once. There was a small button hiding in the back quarter of a box. I hid from it for a year or two, looking in to see by how much the dust had grown. There was a thin film, then a slightly thinner film, then the film tripled, and I took a scalpel to the top layer, saving it for a felt disc that supports the tongue. I am constantly pressing it - pressing my dry mouth to her open eyes. I am looking with my tongue for what I might have saved. Yesterday. Or none.


Memory fragment 2 – Darlene, aged 59: 21st June – “I just stood there. The press in the basement could be seen through cracks in the lacquered floor my father had laid in the 30s. I never thought that burning ink would smell so sweet. Jim had shaken me awake 15 minutes earlier and my robe licked my shins like so many soft tongues. I hadn’t had time to tie my shoes. One sock was slightly lower than the other. The newsprint was singing small squeaking tunes in the air as embers. It was already getting warm, even though the sun was only just above the horizon. I was distinctly aware of my front being warmed by the fire and my back by the sun. It was as though each were there to insure against the other, assuring themselves of their violent efficacy. We’ll rebuild. As soon as I collect the damp headlines.”


Question 7: archival circularity?

Answer 7 – Darlene, aged 59: the internet acts; an invisible cyclical web. an inter-temporal spider with crystal legs. We are saved and saving on the blue light flicker. my hands are shaking from password paroxysms. I hear three faint clicks when I am falling asleep. Some nights my head explodes. As I fall I am leaning on a graphite ledge, looking into the steps to see the tracks of boots. The scarf around my neck starts scrolling, looking for a moose with which to trade aesthetics. I was a French artist. The year was 1643 and my hair stood on end constantly. The rats played with my daughters and taught them how to sing. I am the rooftop and the door-latches and my fingers do not quite understand the lightness of air. Or where I? When? Italy - 40,000 years hence - my mother sits in a terracotta cave, contemplating the landscape and the river that runs through it. The past is hugging cotton candy, and the love of a good man stretches the edges of my future.


Question 8: how have we come to absorb things?

Answer 8 – Jim, aged 63: “Under these circumstantially-ascribed simulation-realities, “I think, therefore I am” becomes by necessity “I think, therefore I think I am”, which, in turn, morphs into “I think I think I am, therefore I think I am” and so on and so forth, ad infinitum, until the basis of all thought becomes so totally abstracted as to render an “abstract” thought more concretely “provable” than a “concrete” one. I feel a little seasick. I think. I think I feel it. I feel it.”


Question 9: 3 doors at once?

Answer 9 – Deke, aged 41: “if there are two doors, there can be three. Step through with arms first and legs after while waving tips at diner chicks. I can only wiggle my toes to prove my dimensionality. Are we just soft cubes in this all this? Pixels? How might these doors look with our eyes closed?”


Question 10: soul-inversions in bi-personal autocratic realities as iterations of pendulous emotive neuro-plasticity?

Answer 10 – Deke, aged 41: “is there time?”


Geographic Memory 1 - Mine: Outside Y

“I am standing on a mushroom shaped rock. What would be the gills are sandy. Generations of Y’s youth have walked here through the grey-green grasses to carve their names and the names of their lovers. Or enemies. One inscription is merely a pictogram of a pistol. Perhaps the wind drew it. Over nearer to the horizon I can see the wind drawing power from turbines that look like a static missile defence system: one button and the world shifts a few metres right or left. There is a small snake at the base of my mushroom. He stares at me for a long time and moves on. I am alone once more and the sound of resting cicadas fills the air. And the stalk of my mushroom becomes imperceptibly thinner.”


Question 11: why me?

Answer 11 – Darlene, aged 59: “me? … well …. this is only a slice in time to illuminate the idea of intra-temporal self-reflexivity: a conversation between one “self” and the infinite other “selves” that “my” existence on this timeline proves the existence of on other timelines. Everything one can and can’t imagine is happening simultaneously. Not somewhere, but somewhen. The English language falls short - “I” am a conglomeration of selves along infinite timelines that exist outside this dimension; outside the linear conception of time, yet I cannot refer to myself as a plurality: “mes” does not make sense here. Yet.

Our lines through time are strings made up of angles, not rulers. Potentiality leads to a net of diverging and consequently converging timelines - timelines converge without warning or “reason”, other than to form part of the fabric of a temporally delineated experiential reality. Is mass time if it becomes experiential? We are, after all, part of the fabric of space-time - why have we been given the ability to sense parts of what might be around it? Can we at all? Do decisions let time expand? Is time a tyranny? What actually happened, ever? Why time not space?

I’m currently in conversation with one of my selves who is becoming greener and greener as the moments pass. She is becoming emerald. Another is fighting back tears on the precipice of a glacier. Many more are jumping on the spot. Many more are yet to. I am also trying to pat a Chinese dog upside down.”


Question 12: why ‘Y’?

Answer 12: I am still awaiting a full response from all participants. Aneka is still setting up an email address. Deke has moved from Y to start a business repurposing spent batteries on the west coast. I cannot think what he dares to make. Darlene is losing time in scrapbooks and Jim, unfortunately, has passed away since my time spent interviewing him. He would be uncertain of his answer I’m sure, and not all too sad.

Thank you.

I'm Singing

And a hand was run through her hair. Ideally, the pair hadn’t met yet, and the bass coils of a time-wound earth still were left alone to hum in soft summer windows. Andrew McIlney tried to concentrate on the light, as the shadows were in the process of seeming longer and longer, while he felt a pleasant sense of receding into green water somewhere close behind his head. He sat bolt upright in his chair. Marta, his wife of eight years, was engrossed with what had become a daily task. Setting out a piece of rough clean calico on the floor and setting out her collection of small birds. Some had fallen from the trees outside as shell-bound mummies, only to be discovered with the aid of a sharp wrap from a teaspoon, and others had been stolen from lurking cats.

Both elbows were perched on the tiles. A trill whispered out from underneath her lips, and the play began. One bird was the mother, the others her children. Each needed preening and cleaning and feeding while the light was still this chewy and ebullient. Totally engrossed in the play she did not see Andrew slip out of the room on vaulted tip-toe. He was in search of food. This was a delicate subject in the house that caged them and gave physical form to the boundaries of their love, as his allergies prevented many different foodstuffs from passing the threshold. Mainly and wildly hypochondriac, Andrew had convinced himself earlier that year, as the bare branches etched themselves on the white of the February sky, that he was deathly allergic to citrus. He had felt a tad queasy once when opening a bottle of lemon-scented bleach for Marta and made an erroneous connection. His hands had started to shake, and the bleach had spilt onto the calico, leaving no mark, but the distinct olfactory shake of lemon.

He searched along the counter-tops in the kitchen for any hint of tang, making sure to run his nose over every surface; the terracotta floor tiles, the handle of the fridge, the radiator, all relinquishing their dust to the tip of his nose, setting him adrift in a sea of sneezes. Roused from her ornithological reverie, Marta started and looked around the sitting room. Andrew was still in his chair: good. She returned to her work. In the kitchen, Andrew patiently waited for a cream cracker to finish off in the toaster, which was a favourite appliance. He had read in an Ayurvedic text one summer the benefits of toasting food. At times this obsession had breached the limits of digestion and hours had been spent testing the different toasting times of newspapers, socks, car keys (burn 1 - finger), sellotape, grass, reading glasses (burn 2 – bridge of nose) before foodstuffs had taken their rightful place on the breakfasting throne.

The cracker protested from between the elements and Andrew drew a knife from the draw to cover what was now no more than hot compressed dust in a thin film of PVA glue. The addiction had started in primary school, and had been with him until this, his 33rd year. Calling ‘Marta?’ through the open doors between the kitchen and sitting room, Andrew started his daily perambulation of the property, which was conducted backwards and in slippers, to add a sense of risk. He was a ‘mild renegade’ as he put it in a round-robin letter to friends and family one Christmas. Carefully navigating the stairs, he called again; ‘Marta?! Do you know where Joshua is?’ No reply issued from the room, so he continued his movements around the house, peering into each room with the vague hope of finding the outline of his son in one of them. The house was laid out in a semicircle, causing such strange acoustics that one could, depending on positioning, be heard from upstairs clearer than from an adjoining room. The immediate effect of this idiosyncrasy was that Andrew could hear Marta’s small trilling from their bedroom above and to the left off the landing. Her songs mixed with those of the birds outside in the garden and Marta seemed to be amongst the trees. Yes. He was sure of it. He could see her perched on a branch high amongst the arrowhead leaves and hanging seedpods of a silver birch. She sang like a lark at dusk, with the sun beating in her plumage. He lit a cigarette from the battered pack in his shirt pocket and leaned on the balustrade, watching her and inhaling deeply from time to time. His eyes took on the glassy attitude of a doll’s and he sank deeper into the polished mahogany. He had been locked into this socially accepted suicide since the depression of his early twenties, and was content with the relationship of user/used. The tar in his lungs was his only retirement fund, barring the house and child. Marta sang, he smoked; the dimensions of the play had been the same since she was first possessed to clothe and swaddle a lifeless bird.

He had happened upon her in the garden that morning, hunched over a mewling cat, hissing and scraping the bare earth with her fingers. She had rubbed them raw amongst the gravel and collected woodcarvings, but the prize seemed worth it. Everything is. That was seven years ago, when the pair had first inherited the house from Andrew’s father. His passing had come as no shock, as the note he left three days before his suicide detailed his coming movements exactly. They had even had time to see him onto the coach to Dover, waving with a wan smile and the last vestiges of the devil in his right eye. The other had been taken by an errant bottle-cap some years before.

Marta paused for breath, and the branch was bare. The cigarette between Andrew’s yellow fingers slipped, falling on the bare part of his foot where it met the slipper (burn 3 - foot). Unaware of the pain coursing from the end of his body up to the start, Andrew shifted in place, swaying a little from side to side. He left the bannister, stumbling backwards into Joshua’s room, making sure to sniff for any sign of citrus. The room was clean. ‘No sign of Joshua,’ he thought, ‘he must be in the garden.’ He turned to descend the stairs, forwards this time, as was customary.

Turning into the bathroom, he pulled the cord to illuminate the walls and set about shaving. There wasn’t much that contented Andrew more than the feeling of the single blade running over the contours of his face, purging it of bristle and dead skin. He lathered himself anti-clockwise and set about fixing a new razor into place in his father’s silver Gillette. Marta, meanwhile, had recommenced her singing, and was imitating the low cooings of a rock dove: a pregnant female. Her hands were busy rearranging the small shapes on the cloth. Today she was differentiating them by size, moving from smallest on the left to largest on the right. At other times she would delineate her collection based on weight, colour or beak size, but since none of the specimens had been taxidermied, it was getting harder and harder to differentiate every bird as some were starting to rot and commingle, becoming something altogether new, and to her wonderful. Having savoured his breakfast and shaved, Andrew turned back towards the sitting room. As he entered, he felt sure that he could taste the memory of some lavender he had smelt three days prior. His vision purpled, and the soft petals were once more crushed between forefinger and thumb. This taste covering him, his eyes dancing through the sunlight to where Joshua was standing. He was now a principle player. Marta had been busy stitching as she sang, and their young son stood as a silhouette before the beaming window, wearing a calico cloak. Arranged as finery were the bodies of thirty or so dead birds, arranged in size order from left to right. Andrew smiled, catching eyes with Marta and running a smoke-scented finger over the brim of her ear, sensing the fulfilment of a task, and whispered ‘hello Josh’. Joshua slowly rotated, smiling broadly at his new garb in the noonday sun. ‘Hello daddy,’ he replied, ‘I’m singing. I’m singing.’


the wording makes it real

-one -

were it vocal


the internet cannot see


cost report that bastard squirrel

i want it’s mother’s stem



the talking is the ass-end of air


come up to me in the street


this all yours is


tamper with my seal

so that I may be returneth

to the shelves

among the cobbledust

a picaresque


were it vocal

the locale

of the yokel

might just resonate strongly

enough to shake

the pen from


her teeth

the gold-tip




poisoning the


of her teeth

the tips

the tips

the tips


of her thighs

lend butter to the outsourced moon

I’m a full plate of neptune tonight, darling

-don’t touch me-

-watch me-



were it vocal, the

light in her



bring about the


might bring about a rupture

in a schismatic


of dramatic


the coconut, shy,

lays on the bed

affeared of it’s own nakedness


were it vocal


were it vocal


were it vocal

the screen

could copulate with the jinxing of my ears

to produce a grey movement that backed

up unto itself

when the barometer needle fell


I’m shattered


were it vocal

my shatter might be dust

might be all true all

might be the zenith of

might be the blue core

might be undulating within

might be ripped across

might be a tackling racist, chants the backwoods

might be hanging (A)

might be hung (B)

might be hanged (C)

might be handed (D)

might be hand (e)


non-commital - 




in italics

by birth -

an ever-so-slight

cock of



left right

& pursuing

an oblique angle

that relates to


long or short


limbs might be.

I lostan


looking at the

kind of

art deco



Indian hills


for a time.

It was thicker.

And woe

betide the editor

- his

eyes are starting

to block

warp; there can be

no easy alignment

- even a portion of the bullet

can’t groove in time with the rifling.

I’m tired of

being pan-handled


those rusted


All smokey

All smokey

they’re alltoo


looking out

& out the open

doors to catch

the final

tone to my

breathing - it’s a personal


with a general interest.

A gorgon with

hedgehog spines

for teeth:

A tuille dust jacket

for the quarterlight

of a beaming text

There must be enough acronyms

by N.O.W.

“Fire!” the backs

of her eyes

rang out, “Fire!”

To whom & for whom

& when

&where weren’t certain,

but the

oranging of her

pupils was.

I’m never alone

with the

memory of that


It’s easier to fallasleep falling

downwards, not back.

I’m getting morose at

the leathered thought

and feeling

of paper bags.

And a hand at the throat of my hair.

And a crumbling mouth at the corner of his face and hers.

And no measure loud enough to compass broad ranges.

The grass.

The grass.

The grass is singing lines from the catechisms -

the horses - the horses are starting to


(asleep) on their feet.

And my fingers are itching.

And the shelves are dishevelled.

And there’s a large butterfly on my kid-glove palm.

And there’s a globe of sap in my wound near the spade.

And I’m swaying.

And I’m singing lines.

And it’s easier to fall asleep falling backwards, not down.

And an empty can clicks, again, at the advent of hot dusk and fired-iron brands ‘R’.

Motion STOP


Sheeting rain STOP

Everywhere STOP

And she’s all over


And the nation’s hood slips back above its


And I’m baffled, all but for a phoenix


And a new trinity supports itself on a sore


me & her & her

And the air starts to petal

prematurely - it isn’t

even spring:

And the prayers run backwards in the seams of the


And mother’s milk is no substitute no


And the father becomes the


And the farm gate opens, exposing a quarter


And it’s easier to fall in love falling forwards,

not down;

falling forwards,

not back.


I am a generation of lost



of which are carried

///by the rising

or setting moon.


It is never really


and can be



We might have been

a young man

once, but

now I am unsure

\\\\\\\\\& cannot


for my mouth


full of seeds

& eggs

- the dreamy



of life -


& our hands are

all clapping

on the tops

of our heads


& there’s a new model

with eyes in its



& I step forwards

to ask

to be asked

to pray.

Our father is

asleep & the latch

on his gate is starting

to peep.

He is again a

baby bird popping,

inflame before the




“To spectate is to act” I hear

the sap whisper

in the nearby trees

& I poke 3 tongues

out of my boiled

head -

one for each finger

I should have

counted off, cut

off in haste -

(look: here’s how I did it…)

The Top Waters

I’m off up to it.

I can help feel too bright -

lost socks.

the troupe thorax waiting,

twine-bound notebooks laying on the bleached porch -

the wine was warm for the first time in 43 weeks.

we toasted the damned walks through the castle grounds

toast gets cold quick in those english racks.

i fought with what it looked like on the radio.

there sat a cork shift in the top waters of a wishing well.

they scanned my brain for the thirst of ground roots.

i ate two small plates and fell sideways from the chair. Her equilibrium upsets mine.

i listened in a passive way when they read the summons from the dock. my name sounded all too funny in that mouth dripping with syrup and 100 other liquids. I caught the scent of pine oil in her nose. There to rest. There to set adrift.

The top waters of the wishing well swell.

The top waters of the wishing well stiffen.

And all of a sudden there are clouds of silence in the channel.

225,000 lines of dog-toothed princes.

And the curl at the back of her skull carries pogo ants as unwilling passengers.

The beds rock in time with the grandfather’s pendulum.

A phalanx in the base of his spine, the chair holds.

And the upholstery quietly orgasms, the leather emitting sweet bovine nothings.

And all the lights happen to be on.

And all the lights happen to be on.

And the top waters of the wishing well quicken.

And the top waters of the wishing well do harm.

And the top waters of the wishing well publish their manifesto on algae-slimed walls.

The court rises










there’s one in the glove compartment

I think

her hip sounds heavy

in amongst the shadowlands

and the cars all stationary

in a small row

and the bags


in upped unison

with the coiled dark of the sky

carrying on

until one catches you

on a breath of goodbye


and the intent of tooling

the conversation took a strange

turn and



dulled by that knife

it was in a sheath near the base of his spine

like the gloves he wore

while cutting wood

or crying


to an unmade bed

in an unnamed house

with a zipcode all zeros

spoken by a plastic voice


I couldn’t open the asphalt

or split bricks

quickly enough

to avoid metamorphosis.

In the end

we were both


as dogs,



start with the far road


pick up a narrow


I-99 steps too far south into the red country

I can’t shake these boots, who covered in clay, what hurts?

the dogs leapt up and up at the gate


to be let in

or out

so to find a leaf or two to piss

sweat against the hot afternoon

sun waxing my for’ead with

her sculpted heat.

the opening to the next lane

poured itself in gravel

and wept

at the prospect of

curtailing the conversation

my dad had once had

Young, Younger

when I was young,


I used to ask what

time we were leaving

as if it mattered

my mother spake the line

crossing the becarpeted hall

under the cobby chandelier

the pink embossed wallpaper shouting


it might be pink

in here

it might be blue


her eyes


it’s open,

the sash window

outward leaning

the thread tools

are tight against

the edges of their

broad bean pods

in rows


and other senses

fur at cropping


Andalusia holds her hand

in her hand

the panting scythe resting against





earth - earth

tree, hanging

off a leaf

the purple thread of the

spade handle

wraps around the brass


that sits

over the lock

next to the crack in the glass

next to the spiderweb wireless

next to the felt tumblers

next to the tissue coffin

the gold thread of the secateurs

walks, eating the Indian air

towards the house

and the lights are in

and the cupboards twitch

and her hair is all

and my feet are falling

the same two steps

the same two steps -

part of me decides

that laughing is

,the other

the twice, undone, removed -

and all around me is the torch

of skin

and the tepid squeezing

of breasts

as the

train doors whistle to each other

come”, acting as interlocutors

for the sun

and her moon.

my waters.

my waters.

my waters start to move along

my canals

the sack of grain contains but grain

where I wish there were vowels

and her hand holds her


where once she held mine

and her smile is greying

as the shaft in the Eastern sky looks

and phones for a




he lays there


the window of the 4x4 down by down

a tribal tattoo walking through the sloped opening

and a sharp dog


in time with the overclocked

engine ticking awkwardly with oil

the clouds are too full pink for this time of year

this cold wind is a forehead, a dagger

my feet face north

the other east away

is this hand holding?

this neck holding?

feet dragging church?

it smells of petrol;

his fingers twitch;

the dog looks up and up through the quarterlight


I’m back in the riverbed, swimming in bitumen.

&A woman



Your eyes shimmer like the surface of a singing gong.

There’s a want present, to be led by the hand through

2 or maybe 3 small pastures.

Monthly, fingernails form as the moon with her, halo.

Luminous, palanquins run on wheels one night, a year.

Upset, the milk jar spills and condenses, tears.

That track is slick with rain,

Your gums lock hands with the money of your gloss teeth,

And the here where no when lies turns amongst the cut hay.

There’s a convention of chasing horse on foot.

There’s no need to bring the tanner over the hearth.

There’s coops full of eggs across the vaulted border.

I can’t help but smile at your cautious strands of why. Of how.

I have no clues as to the tempest of your heels. Their tac.

I will consume 4 visages, emerald. As rings.

To catch the final note.

To read your palms with ice, earth and fire.

To understand the sky for one flash of of.

Of it.

Of it, there is more.

Of it, there is not enough.

Of it, the trunk sucks dust.

Of it, the lines vibrate outwards in the form of song.

For it, shimmers like the surface of a singing gong. 


I’ve split a single image

into 75

hit part of a cinder

and time



on a number of shelves

the jackrabbit runs



among 68,

the others hang no sense

and the pair

becomes the rake

the leaves the ocean

the name


takes up the dead ferns

into the circular container

coughing into a cracked porcelain title:

my hands are speaking the hour

and the house works a new tempo

out out and in in


the only surface is death.


(a) bashed



still no longer





is another


a crumb


in her crotch


the arcing shape of the ship looks

altogether like a smooth face in profile

during an April snowshower

and i am in no fit shape to comment, or scowl

and the look of the ocean from here

cuts back to blackblue


…there might be another display of the mind’s






to feel it?

- - - - - - - - -

in isolation


obsessive stovings

get balled

and bent

in shoestring

- aaaaOOOOOOOOO: a wasp [enters] -

lemon scents

{reminiscent of cold tar}

“ah - so fucking what……”

“you? me?” a gurning father in the corner of the well-lit pub sips champagne and looks around for the undenyable yet truthfully astute and spearing looks of and in the totality of woman. He is in another room. There is a body beside him. Thanks for the speackers. They’re a godsend. When shall I see you again, dear? Aboriginal doubt got in the way of our last meeting and we ended up hitching in the wrong direction. Now, what’s the fact in that? The hitching, or the direction?

.get up.

..i might be..


….rectangularly spectacular….

…..than a dead bird…..

……with a still whistle……

…….and a cut glass beak…….


After sea, the plains seemed aggressively still; corporeally flat; solipsistically hot, arid.

A raid on their camp yielded nothing but an infant with a shattered skull.

When camp was reached, a female coyote was in the throes of existential crisis, one moment caressing the carcass as a lost pup of the brood, the next slaking her thirst in the tear duct wells and gnawing on tiny bruised fingers, raised in one final futile act of embittered self-protection.

His horse had a foaming, bloodied mouth from a day’s hard ride and was pissing deeply into the parchment earth.

He looked into the sun for a moment too long and etched a crescent outline on his retina. Immaculate macula conception.

Sleeping bag, stars, sand, sleep, snake.

And caution

once more


to the



10,000 days staring at the forbidden sun.

A communiqué from an urgent citation.

Her hands are so who.

A goosed mouth drips good lord. Tube air.

A mottled view. My redeemer liveth.

Several small mishaps.

Her mother tripped when she was but small and hit her head on a scuttle - severely severed spinal chord. The columns of one’s mental mansions reduced to chippings for a Philadelphia roadway.

I photographed it so I know it was there. I am my proof of the church of my.

She wrote me a short stack of hot French letters to see me through February. I ceased seeing ardour. Her breath smashed the envelope as I kissed her pressed lips and wove my hair with hers, stamped.

The sea plays morse-code polkas on the granite shelf. A young boy drowned here yesterday. The horses danced in the fields and atop the waves. A bunch of white lilies adorns the cobbled slipway.

From here

to lie

as single




The night poured quiet into the cup of the streets. The mirror hung at the top of the crooked, slender, sand-coloured stairs. In it, reflected, lay three reaching cracks in the stained-glass of the front door.

The top step squeaked E# with the fleshy pressure of his left foot. Irish war horn under one arm and the parish alms book under the other, the toes of his right foot curled with the tension of anticipatory readiness. A penny stuck between this little piggy and that ...

With much oft-practiced dexterity, the penny did not slip as the stairs were descended, softly, one … by one … by one.

As the instrument was laid at the foot of the stairs, it let out the dying breath of St. Augustine, which happened to sound a lot like the noise a snail hears the moment its shell has been trodden on. Before the surface shatters, there thrums the sound of air escaping from beneath the bodyfoot. That bitching hiss. The sound reverberates off the roof of the shellceiling before being released, along with the miasma and effluvium of lifemovement, into the pregnant air.

THHRRRRSSSS - - - ... K.

The latch on the door assented, granting the night's air, among its various passengers, passage to the hallway's passage with its many crevices. The cracks shivered in greeting. The penny rested. A scrap of balled paper, caught in the draft, span into the entryway, round, round, round and round his leg, its scrunch ever-changing, cutting into the edifice of his shin, leaving in its wake the pattern of a rosebud outlined in quickcoagulating blood.

The Conspiring Black of the Road

A charred clown is seen staggering westward.

Nose in hand, the bush of his hair knotted and tied like many small flies cast.

Everything happens between 10 & 2.

There’s nothing more complex than the pasts we’ve forgotten: the selves we’ve shelved.


Arguably, the most serene position is cursed -

the disciples choose to stand; knees tremble.

There’s a short jagged hill behind

the terraces in which it loves - rings

of crimson butterflies

emerge concentrically

every March,

fly for four days

and nights,

resting finally to carpet the

grasses with their

limp petals.

The rouge on her cheek

picks up melons

at the market garden

and smells the sweet nub

where the fruit once was

latched to the leaves,

once was latched to the earth.

It’s mother shrinks.

2 Gorgons stand guard

at the Eastern gate,

sharing an eye

like warm gin.

One turns to the other

in an inauspicious moment

and whispers

“if now …”


Warts siphon lust into pockets. Grim space lunar crust. I had a dream about a girl who ate her hair in class. One strand at a time - dipped in hot butter. She was expelled for drawing labia on her bald head and bringing a replica neutron star to show and tell emblazoned with the words ‘Mary was my fuck golf. Hole in one.” The teacher rose to speak, her teeth turning to dust as she looked downwards at the head. Something twisted in her jaw that remembered her of the scent of hot limes. She sat, hard, on the uneven chair. The girl left the scene to the accompaniment of strings, her two fingers raised in triumphalist valour. I’ve shelved that among many of my emotions.

Underwater constructs shocked shards shellac. Surface tension boundary drawn. I am seldom satisfied with leaves. A small part of every arse-cheek bounces when hail falls sideways. I love the look of blood in February. The light lends the oxides a playful air. Summer, blood looks lost in a new town. With my ink I write a man;s name in a child’s hair. I’ll have to follow protocol. Bureaucratic un-agency sails past for want of a blunt addiction. Mu pinkies quake. Touch my left hip and watch me go off. I’m princely underneath this grime.

I am in love with the comfort death promises. Swaddle me in your 4D blanket, mother, and grant me access to my homeland. Something about freedom smacks of cannibalism. My turgid money flies the world. Lucky bluebottles traipse the walls in search of sweet somethings. Sweet nothings. Whisper them to me through a megaphone as I sniff your neck and plan my escape. I want to sew a fake button on your shirt during the eclipse. Life can be nothing but an extended ellipsis when all newborns are bathed in the smoke from their cremating, dessissting fathers. My first breath is of you.

I covet the ways your cheeks twitch while you cry - a blunder and wilting tremor to name no few. So far you trust me, no further beyond, I carry you twice through unwise gatherings. My solipsisms melt; reserves jettisoned …

And then,


the net curtain,






still mother-moist,


some softsanctuary.

The linoleum creaks -

the vacuum moans -

my eyes taxi for takeoff.

Somewhere, a crooner lies to a leaning woman.

A lie leans, feminine, into the crooner -

The crooner and the lady lie together.



Slide out of sight of scythe. There’s a blues out there waking - wearing a tunic of grey felt. Our path will be of watched water. Comforted highwaymen prowl tough corners. An over-egged voice moans for drinks a-plenty & reason. Pass the seltzer water, Jim - it’s time to buck fizzy. A gimlet for this gambit.

Austere, blind Plato stumbles the cobbles. He, waiting, wants for companions. His money buys ale; the ale friends. To live alone is to face and conquer one’s own death. I’ve been bruising myself lightly with cutlery in order to assuage my lust.

My last lust lost a lot of weight recently - binge / purge … purge / binge … you’d better surf that milk, mate - we’re looking a bit thin. Its hair started to strand but there’s no use in the action. This all is truly for its own good and nought else. Logic dictates the necessity of apathy. I’m too bored and poor to be too apathetic - it’s pathetic, really, but no amount of pathosorbathosorlogosorpragmatismormoneyortimeorconsternationorprocrastinationorconstellationorobstinacyorhateorloveorpeaceorconflictorquestingorwantorneedordeafeningbeautyorislandsofgrain will stop the only and inevitable dawning of dusk.

From Dust to Dusk.

All Fall.

Bless You.

And You.


Blue fire on Venus; we come together to soften.

Shout your initials into a postman.

Just lightly enough to let your letters let out a perfect breath of X.

My oval lagoon sits on a throne of shells, shells, shells, stone and oil.

Lend me the parts of your blossom you are willing to part with for a time.

Like angels, we’ll gust recreation.

Pragmatism falls short in ambition in the blue corner, while gnosticism stares, with strained false-doe eyes, from behind a needle in the red.

Her arches are flat.

I have passed her bridges in amongst the tightening heads of corn.

Bubble tennis is huge on Jupiter this season. All one needs to play is liquid hope. They sell bottles of the stuff next to elixirs of lust posited as love.

Fore’er the twin shall mix.

Betwixt your eyes grows a primed zit in the shape of a rose petal.

She is not perfumed.

If we found some money I’d stake it all on the strange straightness of your teeth, my dear - they’re fantastically frivolous, o mushy one …

Where has our conception of time wandered? It’s on a beach with its face and hands in the sand, praying endlessly.

My story ends with high C.

Back when I was bracken my shins, might ache.

Heathen tributes.

Concrete, o holy father; my one sin is concrete - I have abjured him and left my wake for a fluid statement through unflinching stable doors.

Bite your own lost sense of valour and drown your coat.

HEAVEN is full of hairdryers.


only eat grapes from the hospice waste-bin. there's no sweeter taste on this earth than the last-sensed tableaux of a dying man. the clear water of the Rhine holds no candles. our brain curtsies on the threshold of the bivouac. this butter lamp perfumes the room with hirsute phantasms. a ledge sat, eagerly awaiting transmutation, and transformation, and a dimension of ands other than thats,


Hunger swan from eyelet to eyelet - her ears sat beyond the lagoon as her body wept on the panelled veranda. 6 soft legs announced themselves with retinue on the purring geraniums. A 1/4-pot of mustard laughed as a purpling became cloud. The street-lamps counted certain gathering motes while upstairs, veranda below, he parted to where he should have never been. Somewhere; the never beyond somewhere.

The good doctor will speak with you now. What news is there from The Eastern Steppes? What love? How has the lost city regained her fecundity? Why, past earth, is that boy winking at me? His blurred hematite pupils drip with new poison. We’re onto something here; you and it. My i’s are tired - let them rest for a bitter while.

For once, her legs can’t sense the shifting pattern of crunch. She bleeds from the navel whenever hot pink dies. Disco stigmata. It can’t wait for all that fire. Certain heatshimmering endings seem to time inevitable. There is no end to nothing - it is its only constant metaphor.

The shutters along that pathway fall at dusk - forged railings slot with alien precision into guide-rail…



Some of us, with bluesmoke pouring from ruptured cavities, will have to survive

to lead

the second-falling

of mind.


Purple Comfort.

Ejaculation Loner.

Scoop Softly.


Cool Choice.

Buttoned Fresco.

Pandemic Cough.

Unguent Syllable.

Creeping Hair.

Nasal Dropsy.

Wheat Welcome.

Scorched Purr.

Scab Gasket.

Mortician Conga.

Heresy Bellow.

Coin Operation.

Zipped Sip.

Gastronomic Corduroy.

Technocratic Pan-Angle.

Lens Curdle.

Bested Merit.

Strapped Bastard.

Tin Bottle-Cap.
















Polity - 

Her, the desk-clerk,


on hearing

small tinned announcements

pertaining to

the grand eloquence


The One Who Wears Furs.



at all opportunities



equilateral drift

of the smallest


on his

many-lined shirtsleeves.

A mastiff toss

of the


thumbs extended and


crease’d, expanding


with index & pinky -

the ink in

her rollerball looked


for the unearthed thud,

of a specimen’s

footfall -

there -

the eyes begin

to ope,

with an enclosing wine-soaked


against which

the vinegar cannot hope

to cope.

“Enter” - his,


desk struts to the waning door,

silvering in the shadow

of its


mango tree -

a light rain welcomes

the windows

to ride.

My own drop piques

the static of another,

and coagulates -

the lighting

all but stands,


& rotates into a spheroid

pattern with




angle hidden

in its curvature -

scoliosis of the lamp -

the spine of the sun


sinusoidal fluid

that drops

as sunspots

onto the retinas

of the bespectacled


That button I sewed

onto your shirt

during the last





uncanny hue

from green



and back

again -

there’s too many

just too many



Sequinned dresses flash on their fall from the low balcony.

An orange assembles itself against the railings.

Trailing a can behind a car is a modern lyric of love.

Shift into low gear. Document the accumulated dust of months spent subterranean.

Pearl diving off the cliffs of Santa Monica. Bay.


There’s a personal celebration; my fort.

Turgid fortitude; these gloves could be.

Warmer. The bliss of this moment will be captured by your splitting hairs.


Our French windows run in goose fat.

Careen into a negative parsec. Darken my mutt. Boot the tyre’s typeface.

After all …


There is always something to resist. Irresistibly blue.

Pheasants carried baskets of rennet on their backs.

The padlocks sang with sour new cones.

A horse hid a punnet of mulberries behind a bronze statue of a mouth. The inscription on its plaque read “DON’T.”

Pick me up. Walk with purpose to a grocery. Barter fun.

Draw a triptych. 3 crisp ovals: each containing the yolk of another’s egg. Albatross. Gannet. Cormorant. Mutant feathered zygote.

Weave a new dram of whiskey.

Solidity is a myth.

Jettison your corneas.

Soften your code.

Prize up a floorboard and use it as a model with which to explain to a roomful of gathered experts your new method of taxation. It would save the country exactly NO bureaucratic clamour.


I couldn’t forgive myself my spherical existence.


This tableaux will only fleet - God then can feed.

The fish I caught, those days were ghost.

I’ve waterproofed a lamp. She screams now in the dry breeze.

Wind on a grinning film.


A farrier shod steel rain onto the belly of a cloud. The nails he used were ambergris.

Ham smacks of mother-of-pearl rainbows.

A disembodied voice shouted “CUNT” through a car window on a Tuesday in middle-England. It was drizzle. It was dree. It was noon.

The light was on. At sunrise all reeked of tumescence.

Send me a bunch of flowers and I’ll do you a doing. I’ll press you. Seven petals.

Those guitars are strung with cowslips.

Persistence is a key human fault: She throws a ball for a dog with no teeth. His mouth closes over the ball, hers closes over the dog … the ball rolls free, sticky, into a snowdrift. Drip. Drip. Drip. I close my eyes to catch the drops of moisture from the tip of a snowman’s carrot. It seems it’s his penis.

Somewhere beyond the never thinking lies flattery through true utterances. Dead leaves rustle past True Beauty’s dress. Her vassal has a withered arm. He looks to be around 7. The rings fall from her tumbleweed knuckles. The moon rises.

My arm heard a weathered ear approach. One cheek smiled.

Tree bark soars through hemispherical arcs.

Somewhere, a man sniffs a new-born’s head and salivates. He can’t know why.

Conceptual trust can’t connote conceptual longevity.

I’ve recorded the sound of ants building.

A medley of indicted gentlemen paid for my facial tattoo. It reads “I AM YOURS” – – – I am considering renting out my other skins.

A bag of peach pits was left on the seat next to me on the train. The bag was made from rough burlap. The pits were all dry. I broke a tooth. I sucked one wet. I spat. The pile of the carpet drank my spit gladly. A woman began to sing. I didn’t know the language but I hummed the tune. She heard me and stopped – I loved her for that.

One fit avenue jumped hot across my step. In step with my instep the doors glowed, low, into the surrounding sounds. Wounds. Waiting. Waiting. I flayed the skin on the back of my hand with a scalpel. The raw meat held the scent of violet for a time, then almond. I draped the skin on the peak of my hat and walked to work. My boss congratulated me, shaking the opposite hand.

Two nights ago the nights died.

The limits of velvet mean nothing.


wheelbarrow - 

An empty wheelbarrow reverberates when struck -


Seven pieces of identical clay sing hymnals into frothing buckets of milk.

Bob for my real soul.

Surnames squeak on the third floor of a maisonette.

Woof woof.

Hospital stench now bottled - Aisle 4.

A prim spike gorges -

A louche belly flops -

My arms enfold an unused envelope -

Her aged stamp moistens itself.

This Is Yours

I haven’t had a morning.

This cupola is too round too.

My knees are numb.

That surface sounds flat.

We’re more homogenous

when I’m alone.

There’s harmony i the silence

above that drone. G#.

This newest review puts

Lenin at centre stage

during the opening minutes

of the closing act -

his tonsure gleams

in the par-can beams.

A little to the left.

Remember your blocking.

That tape severs purpose.

Metronymic children.

Mercurial visions.

The corners of those street lamps

bulge silver dollars

in June.

An army of climbers descends

on the city with rough palms

and resin soles.

The tarmac mumbles to keep us awake at the wheel.

A close-by pasture burns.

Smoke and skunk-stench blend; blind.

There are some few conditions to breathing this air.

Rightly, it suffers - a false crack steps -

fortune fountain -

as her small

foot slips.

A child’s dress is found downriver.

This is yours;

and this. 


Pt. 1 - Lightness in Light: Rise/Rise -

a speck

dowsed -

- doused

in liquid reified earth

clump by clump the clay unveils itself.

To Itself.

As Itself.

A dog, in the

perennial park pursuit

of dogliness,

kicks up some loam,







I is Itself.

A magpie winks obsidian

from behind

its perch.

You were talking to him;

mouthing words through thick,

fog. He couldn’t



The Sound of Talking.

Invaluable, Ineffable, unenviable Beauty



out naked

in front of one of the spurs of the

fatted roots of an elm,

announced herself,

and retired.

Her crowded grace.

Too hallowed place.


Glit’ring, the earth


coveted itself.

Pt. 2 - Darkness in Light: Dusk\Rise -

black crystal mosaic necklace

up the lamppost rust ground back


ghostly glass doorswoop

galvanised zinc doorstop

gurning tinfoil doorman

the linoleum of the hallway is covered

in geometric mauve patterns

concentric squares

the sun refracts

through thermodynamic


an accustomed, refuted hummingbird

picks a bottlecap from

a puddle

the mezzanine level holds

many fine specimens

E128A … E130 … cochineal … quinine …

our concrete groans

echo sinusoidal fluid

barnchambers weep

the Roses

the Roses flow

the sheer taste of winter in the city staggers

tremors unearth symptoms

of travel systems/salvos jumped

“can i call you back later for a lick?”

“a handful of gleam

for a glimpse into the

greens of absalom and achitophel, mate”

“that’s 9 quid”

that one’s 11”

















the Breeze lifts

the Roses

the Roses slowly char. 

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