Archive | April 2014

The bookshop

A thousand unbounded worlds,
neatly packed into shelves,
call out to us to explore,
to dig deep and discover ourselves.

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Anxiety

Today, I shake

in a frozen state

between desolation

and suffocation.

 

Today, I was told,

by friends who understand,

to go to sleep,

to be a man.

 

Today, a doctor

laughed at me;

there was nothing wrong

for him to see.

 

Today, I sit

all by myself,

feeling a thousand miles

from everyone else.

 

Today is just

another day

where nobody listens

to a word I say.

 

 

We are all in this together.

How grand it is to live today
in a world where we’re told what to say
and how to think and what to do
because those who lead us know what’s best for you.

Camera to camera;
We are actors in their eyes
who need constant surveillance
to save our lives.

In their second houses,
let’s help them survive
and engorge them with taxes
for the rest of our lives.

Together we stand
against terrorism for one another;
We are all equal,
Yet some are more equal than others.

Touch

Please can you let me speak
in words which do not leak
all the truth and intention
from our conversation.
Our mouths move too much,
yet our skin speaks with certainty
and, in every touch,
you know what you mean to me.

Locks

Madness, my love;
madness is the key.
If you’re willing to be mad
then you’ll unpick me.
Help me open doors
to a life where more
can be discovered
through the hot press of another.

Twist and crack,
then never look back
at the world that let you go.
Pass on through
to a place that wants you
and will forever let you know.

Self storage

A light burns dimly
through the veil of uncertainty
as we set fire to the trail
which leads us back to a time
when you stopped being you,
when you stopped being mine,
and began to lose your way
in other people’s lives.
I don’t know why you chose to bend
your starry dreams to accommodate them.

Amongst the crowd,
you shared yourself
and, at the day’s end,
were left with nothing else.
Now I look into the glass,
the shine behind your eyes,
and see more of myself
than the self you denied.

Spring

Walk out into the warmth
and feel the heat press
against your shoulders,
against your skin,
like a lover you used to know
and waited in the coldness for.
Walk with the sun’s touch
through streets saturated in stories
from another time.
You’ll be fine
when the clouds cover the sun
and the coldness returns.
Wrap yourself in the memories
you once wore tight on your skin;
Wrap yourself up and stay warm, always.

Puzzles

Her eyes had faded to a foggy grey-white, looking onward with a glossy forever stare. She looked beyond death and beyond me. Her cheeks sat high up on her face; the left cheek had sunken slightly from the blow and made her look ugly. In this yellow light, the blood shone like thick tar across the backs of my knuckles. I tried to wipe the blood away, but it had worked its way into my skin and, as I raised my hands to the dying bulb that slowly swayed from the ceiling, I could see the outline of every cell – every cell marked in a thick border and made to stand out. I examined my skin and followed each cell as it interlocked with the next; it formed an endless puzzle of me.

The television had been switched to a station of static during the struggle. Perhaps we had accidentally rolled over the remote control? The television hissed at me as I picked up a small shard of glass from the floor. This fragment was once a part of a champagne flute, now it tells a story of something more. An empty champagne flute represents celebration, perhaps the celebration is yet to happen or maybe the party has already taken place. The flute glass is a synecdoche of good times, wealth and progression. A smashed fragment of a champagne flute, however, speaks beyond itself in such an uncanny way. The sharp glass piece cuts through the perfect image of celebration and turns it into tragedy. This shard represents the fall – a fall from the height of celebration. Now what went wrong?

I pressed the glass into my skin and carved out a cell. Well, nothing went wrong because the celebration was a lie that she chose to believe. Tragedy was always expected from tonight. I knew this and, to some extent, I think she knew it too.

The glass moved away from my skin to reveal one singular cell balanced delicately on its point. This was a part of me. It still is, but it now lives out of context: an artefact to an unknown city. This singular cell can now break away from me and live its own existence yet is also still historically connected to everything that has happened before. It is a lone puzzle piece which exists in its own right, but will forever evoke the ghost of the entire picture. This cell is my lone puzzle piece for those who protect our rights to be civil, who fight to keep the monster at bay and the idea of morality intact. You call these people the law and you run scared. You hide beneath the wings of the law because you are afraid of the chaos that can be found within yourself when you are completely unbound from civilised structure. This part of me will be a gift to keep those men and women, who protect you from yourselves, searching for the entire picture. In the end they will find the monster they are searching for. I hope they say “thank you”.

My blood filled the incision quickly and created a tiny dot which held a dome shape for a few seconds before the surface tension gave way and let the blood dribble down my skin. My blood washed with hers. A sex of dark reds raced down to my elbow and formed a large drop on the tip of my elbow. The drop swelled until it released itself and fell to the floor. A vacuous calmness had now occupied the space that primal thrusts and drives had resided moments ago. The ancient snarling animal subsided into the darkness and all that remained was silence.

I sat there by her side until the morning. We stared into each other, unblinking. I worked her face into a pretty smile and invented a little life for her. She had not previously told me her profession, but she looked like a teaching assistant. She – her name is Macaria – would early arrive to class, twenty minutes before even the teacher, and go over the plan for the day. Macaria was enthusiastic for everything in life, had the ability to flood a room in a calm that could wash over all.

‘She was magnetic, in a sense that life was drawn to her’, Mr Macaria will say through tears, eyes staring deep into the lens of public sympathy. ‘She was so kind…I just don’t know how anyone could do this to her…My beautiful baby girl’. The end of the sentence will be sobbed out violently, the words will be barely audible, but we will all know what was said. How unoriginal death makes us. There is a plethora of adjectives in the English language and all that can be said about the dead is how ‘good’ and ‘kind’ they were, even if they were absolute demons. You never see that, a man stand up in church and speak the truth about his dead daughter: ‘She was a slut and I haven’t seen her for years because of it!’ Now that is passion, my friend! But no, Macaria was not a slut… or a terrible person. I had not known her long enough to see anything about her character that suggested this, thus I decided that she was in fact an amicable young lady. She had given herself to me and for that I was eternally grateful.

Unfortunately, Macaria was now all used up and she needed to leave my life. I took a serrated knife from my suitcase and began to turn her into a puzzle. The flesh cut well, but the bone needed to be broken. I stamped down hard. I was a hammer. Fuck me, this made things extremely messy. By the time I had broken her down enough to fit into my suitcase, chunks of flesh swam like islands in blood. She had exploded into the pieces of herself and now I saw in her what I had always been – a scattering of pieces slowly drifting away from each other. There were no words, no communication between my pieces, just a continuous overlapping of broken thought. A mind muted by the vacuum of violence between its pieces.

After I cleared away all the blood, I walked over to the hissing television with my luggage prepared. The static stations always reminded me of pins and needles in the feet – such an uncomfortable buzz of broken noise. The power button made a numb click as I pressed it. The television sighed, the light on the screen raced from all corners to its centre and then, darkness. I opened the door to the hotel room and paused momentarily to listen to the night. Silence. Well, not complete silence. A faint murmur swam below the surface. I closed the door behind me. The murmur followed me into the night. It was drowning dead air – static noise, perhaps; an endless game of Chinese Whispers and, of course, chaos.

Casting shadows upon the mind

There it is again. It always returns to me at night, just before I fall asleep. That dull screaming from the back of my mind. It is a pressing madness that keeps scratching, digging in deep and regurgitating the past. Everytime I close my eyes it is there, hiding, semi-submerged, in the shadows that have been cast upon my mind. That thing. The broken heap of youth spread out across the wet tarmac. The apparition of a broken pale face.

The road looked like snake skin that night. I was out driving so late that it was nearly early. It was 3.50am and the road had become swallowed by a thick woods either side. The wind spread screams across the sky and spat the rain sideways. As I drove onward, the trees on each side of the road reached outwards and clustered into an entangled roof which blocked out the moonlight. The darkness grew around my car, the rain eased and the wind died into a suffocating silence. Even the car engine seemed smothered into muffled sounds. The silence was deafening. The silence had amplified the sound of my breathe. A dull wheeze. It seemed unfamiliar, as if someone else was breathing through me. The breathe of a person not yet there.
I switched the radio on and it shouted half-words through the crackling reception. I began to fiddle with the tuning dials until I heard the comfort of someone else’s voice. I smiled. I am not alone. My eyes flicked upwards just as something pale flashed across the road. The wheels screamed and the brakes glowed red trying to stop. The tyres slipped and the rear end of the car spun out slightly. I wrenched violently at the steering wheel just as two dark eyes flashed before my car. There was a deep crunch. The car jolted as something was knocked to the ground. It looked like a person.

The headlights focused on the frozen face and turned a knot of limbs into a work of art. There was a moment when my eyes fell upon the uncanny curves of the smile that split her face – that dead smile branded itself onto my brain. Had I just killed someone? Was I a murderer?

As I exited the car, the corpse seemed to spider out of view. It moved in a sporadic jolting fashion, bones cracking with each movement. It simply scarpered away towards the trees. As the pale face sunk into the darkness, its eyes fixed upon me. I chased it briefly into the forest. It had gone. I stood in the forest for a few moments trying to train my eyes to see through the darkness. Trying to see what had died and reanimated infront of me. I felt eyes all over my skin. Something was waiting in the darkness. It wanted me to pursue it.
Was I a murderer? No, what I saw was not human. It was something completely unreal. A mouth warped with insanity and a pair of large dark eyes. No facial expressions, only stillness.

I returned to the car and turned off the engine. The headlight dimmed and a world of darkness washed into the areas the light had accommodated. I step away from my car to see a dark road open up infront of me. My feet moved like a memory as the silence began to scream at me from the trees. The cold and pale face, stared from the depths of my past. I walked onward towards the unburied memory, in pursuit of dark discovery.

The endless road

Tonight we dine in black
in rooms stained with memories.
Drive home; back
to a time when she pressed
deeply, warmly against our sides
before the wind blew desolate
behind our eyes.
‘Hold on tight,
we need to cross’.
‘Hold on tight,
you’ll get lost’.
Screams broke through
the youthless hisses
and windshield kisses.
How could we not see
the cars swing wild,
crunch and burn and
steal our child?

Tonight we dine in black
pushing back tears.