Monday, November 25, 2013

super-late mega update

Here are the poems I submitted for my final folio in my Writing Poetry subject. There's a sonnet in there, so watch carefully! Some fiction, some faction, some familiar, some totally fresh. Enjoy!


Having never been aware
of the advent of
I failed to prepare a suitable section for 'personal life',
being far too focussed on ruthless and bloodthirsty dictatorship.
The whimsical facts apparently so necessary for modern audiences eluded me, and all I can supply instead are the numbers of lives I took, while defending the voice of freedom.
Apparently though, I look good in a wig,
but everybody wore them,
so I'm not quite sure why that's surprising news.
In your time if a man wears a wig,
he's singled out for public blandishment,
as though it is right to demand a full head of hair til death do you part upon the altar of age.
But no! It is not right! I demand a fair trial!
A people's court!
The swish and spring of the guillotine!

Ah, Madame Guillotine, I always dressed for you in the finest of white stockings,
applauded your efforts to shave the unruly beard off the national escutcheon.

I also quite enjoy having a huge, weapon,
rising up above the crowd,
statuesque symbol of...
symbol of...

My advice to all future dictators is simple,
and garnered from my experience and that of my friends.
Don't allow young women to meet with you in your medicinal bath.
Don't shoot yourself in the jaw (it hurts).
Don't encourage the people into too many rash and swift executions, yours will be next.
Do however make as full use as possible of such words as 'committee', 'public' and 'safety', and I can recommend a little brandy in the morning
to get in you in the mood for
signing endless documents
and meeting with smelly men.

Spurned, or, Human Error

He was a barb:
a fragment of glass, swallowed accidentally.
He scraped first at her lips,
(her words caught)
next, her throat
(shredded, twisted into knots).
But it was the long, slow descent,
through metres and metres that nearly killed her:
internal bleeding the least of the worries
as they lay together,
(her heart screaming)
him sleeping, her distressed.
     Never had a minds meeting,
     never nothing but a near miss.


When you were leaving,
and picking up your keys from the console table,
and rifling through your bag,
and going on about whether you’d need a taxi for this evening,
I wondered if I should tell you that
in my dreams last night
I floated on a magic carpet
in a scene not dissimilar the sequence in Aladdin
that we used to watch together
while mum cleaned the kitchen
and let us eat popcorn
and sang along loudly when we turned the music up.

I didn’t want to listen to the details of your day,
but remember the feeling
of flying without falling,
that even though,
sitting on a carpet is not exactly comfortable
for long periods of time,
in transit, this one felt
like a soft cushion of air,
plush fibres
and a large dose of subconscious recognition
that I was still lying on my own bed,
cradled by the extra, sheepskin layer I put on it in the winter,

and we used to speak of such things
when I was less anxious
and you were less busy
and we generally chatted
between our bunks 
after lights out in the evenings,
so pointless in daylight saving,
as the glow through the plastic venetians
continued to reveal the
shapes and textures of the room. 

In earnest voices we'd discuss
almost any thought that crossed our minds,
the way we felt when tuna-bake was served again
on silent Sundays, 
a gastronomic ritual we both disliked. 
We'd speak about the books we'd read
and I'd advise,
from my obvious maturity
the best way to deal with grandparents.

Are we grown-ups now, 
is that the problem?
The reason I can no longer speak
of frivolous dreams
and vague impressions?
Do suits impose a verbal prison from which
no ordinary words can be spoken,
only business mish mash and 
public speech?

You said, “goodbye, I'll see ya later”
closing the door before my reply. 
“My magic carpet's better than yours,
and I don't give a stuff about your boyfriend”
to the empty room,
the blank door, 
the missing voices. 

word to Derrida

You are a black hole,
whose centre is a vacuum. 
I am a solar system, 
whose centre is a sun.

for Paris

Not cold in her grave she lies,
but hot.
Baked back to clay by unforgiving sun.

Three days have passed,
but life's light does not sink down,
piercing thick layers of soil to touch her.

Life's light has not reached
her stiffening, suffocated body at all.

Her silent lips are mimicked now
by silent stares above.
She speaks not death's dark secrets,
while blind teachers disclose empty truths.
Milk stuff,
to minds starved of meat,
so needed for their journey ahead.

Paris died.
Small child.
And every womb cried out,
empty arms groped for their beloved.

No no no no no no no.

Don't worry yourselves about it,
it didn't happen,
but it did,
so we should shut up now
and eat some chocolate.

Hallmark words will not revive her,
no kiss of life can now resuscitate.

But yet,

your voice may find her,
through soil and darkness penetrate.

Unafraid of death's dark shadow,
powerful truth, now spoken as command.


And light will blind her,
breath shall find her lungs again.


Soon your hands will wither.

Those veins you can barely see now
will strike new wrinkles in your skin,
rise up over softened crevices.

Your neck will slouch,
descend to meet the breasts that
also have descended
down down down
to meet the bottomless belly
draped over wasting thighs.

Soon, soon, as time reveals, exposes,
your body will fold in, replace,
become unrecognisable.

This skin contorts, transforms,
is plastic
in the image of its maker.

A constant reminder
of your fragility, changeability, liminality,
the fine, filmy substance of your physical existence

in this epoch.

You should EMBRACE
this final, flaming, sunset spark,
the glory unparalleled of being allowed
to dance and shine before your maker.

And then, look forward
to dawning again,
upon a world remade,
fresh light,
new skin,
new blood.

1 comment:

  1. These are wonderful - Love Childhood especially. Thank you for sharing.