Hangover

A saccharine sensation, sticky and wet,
the morning on the tip of my tongue,
the night layered across my teeth.

Blue slithers of my eyes water themselves,
from between heavy lids, drip into waking
and find themselves regretful of their venture.

Hair plays at monkey games on my jungled face,
swinging from nose to ear to sky,
and i?
I remain unable to be swayed from the swaying.

Fan Fiction

When it comes to men in books
Everything’s about sex

They want

Mr Darcy in the drawing room

Heathcliff on the moors

Rochester and his great big

Dog

I don’t know
If I ever met Dorian Gray, I’d probably just ask him to tea.

London’s backwaters

12:00

In my hideout away from London in N1, I can hear birdsong and smell the sweet burnt coal from the boats. City noises evaporate and nature resounds.

High-pitched whistles and tweets from the birds push away the heights of crowded buildings, and the clouds are visible once more.

All I dream of is here, in amongst the concrete mass, yet so far removed. Urban sprawl conquered by nature’s sprawl. Lapping water carrying cares downstream.

And in the summer here, it is heaven. Only clouded by the thought of a full turn of the clock.

13:00 and London returns.

Sick Day

Discreetly sneezing into an elbow
(always your own)
in accordance with the latest advice
You are the master of cold and flu etiquette
Until, feeling bolder, you remove your cardigan
You forgot about the sodden tissues
stowed in sleeves
now raining to the ground
Your colleagues pretend not to notice
the two-ply chemical weapons you’ve just unleashed
Later they’ll say
She should have stayed at home.

Blue Bicycle

you drop it right there
your blue bicycle
in the almost-grass of april
and it sinks in
just a little bit
like a tired dinosaur
the blue kind
i don’t know all the kinds
you talk about them a lot
but i always forget

migrants

envious,
i watch them
splayed fat across the sky.

we are the same,
pulled from within
towards the warmth of our mothers’ bellies.

suffocating from cold
we scream –
squark!
‘let us be free from this place’.

they, freed by flight
squeal and shout;
‘join us!’
and then they are gone,
smudged into the horizon.

i am left.
flightless,
in the autumn leaves.

The Girl and the Tree

tree_girl

She first saw the tree when she climbed to the top of the Mount. She put down her satchel and caressed his skin; she pressed her cheek against his body and felt his strength. He sighed.

“Why were you born a tree while I was born a girl?” she asked him, gazing up to where his fingers touched the sky.

She visited the tree every day. In the summer months, the tree’s hair was green. She would strip off all her clothes and press her hot body against the tree’s cool flanks. In the autumn the tree’s hair turned reddy brown. She spent more and more time with the tree and spent less time in her home.

“You and I are just the same,” she’d say.

One evening, just as Autumn was becoming Winter, she ran away from home and went to see the tree.

“I wish I could stay here with you for ever,” she said.

She saw that much of the tree’s hair had fallen to the ground and lost its color. She felt so much tenderness that she wanted to scoop it up. She sat down, her back against him. The sun went down. When she thought about home, she knew that she would never go back. She would have to make her way up to the city. It would mean leaving the tree behind.

“Don’t you wonder what it would be like to be able to move around?” she asked him, wishing she could know what it was like to be so still.

That night, she told the tree all of the stories of her life. How she had never had anyone just be there for her before, or see her as she really was. She moved as close to his body as she could. She closed her eyes. She sensed the tree digging deep into the earth and growing into the air. She felt herself being drawn along with the Winter’s night inside the tree, melting out of her girl form and becoming part of him, held under his skin, an injection of love, mixing with his juices and flowing around his veins, pumped around all night by his mighty tree heart.

In the morning, the word ‘Goodbye’ fell from her lips as softly as the drops of dew that fell from her clothes.

Untitled

Just a quick note to say
hi I hope you’re ok
because I am
I have a new girlfriend
she has tattoos
she is more adventurous
than you you know
I didn’t want to become
that couple who chat
on the phone at lunch
because they can’t at home
but we did remember the time
we couldn’t go on holiday
because you had to work
fuck that was romantic

sent from my iPhone

Mooning

Let me tell you only two things from my youth. When I was five years old, my father told me a sci-fi story every night. The protagonist was a five-year-old boy whose parents had perished with everyone else on earth. I alone had been saved by an alien species, who called themselves “the golden men”. Even though they cared for me, I escaped every night to look for my real parents. One of my friends was an enormous ant who lived on the moon and had built a time machine which allowed me to go all over the place. I had many adventures this way though I also felt quite sad often. I wasn’t sure if I was entitled to be sad: after all I had been spared! This went on for several years. Much later when I was grown up, at least I’d begun to feel that way, my parents’ house was not the right place to fool around. I used to go to a park with my girl friends at night. It was a special park though since it belonged to an enormous open cemetery. We felt there could not possibly be any chance of discovery: a cemetery! (It wasn’t a creepy place at all, just empty and lush, the gravestones well hidden in the shrubbery.) I often had the impression we were being watched but I was never sure and in any case, we were beautifully busy. If there were voyeurs they were very discreet and cautious not to be seen. I suppose if there were voyeurs then we’d have a bunch of shared memories now. It’s fun to reminisce. It doesn’t hurt anyone to go back in time, perambulate the past, cull clover leaves.

Modern Romance

I never want to see you again.
– Angus (sent at 17:38)

Kitty Sashkovich sat there, crying
on the train
as suburbia passed her by.

She didn’t know
that he had sent the text
to the wrong number.

That’s Not My Name

I hadn’t had time to watch Thor
or to read any of the comics
so I had no idea why you
were wearing a red cape,
brandishing a large hammer,
and referring to me as ‘Jane’.

Just try

Oldskool. Words printed on cellulose papers and bundled up in a book. Now, that’s going a step further. Or, shan’t we say, back? Words printed on a cellulose paper then folded up and inserted in a bundle of papers with a bunch of words. That has its own charm. Try to stick this bookmark in an e-reader.

Jan Orrok

Inception Haiku

Five in the First line,
Seven in the Second line,
Five in the Third line.

Good Pluck

The day I was dumped

I stopped plucking

my eyebrows.

I haven’t had a good

pluck now for

nearly three months.

I used to pluck

every day. Or,

rather,

I wanted to pluck

every day but my

tweezers,

they only wanted to

pluck me every

second, third or fourth

day.

I’m getting pretty hairy.

Pioneers

This table
is the high seas
Open water, bread crumbs
We reach across
opposite shores
and let our glasses travel

Casting

A wild howl
Hunts from above
Tearing my cells up
In honeycomb hunks
Leaves fall from the trees
Moulting hair parting
Revealing me fleeing
That enormous tongue
Flickering and testing
The air like a snake
Narrowing on my body
Locking on, casting out
Plunging down
Like a drinking straw

Forged in your pits
I peel away from myself
Rolling and burning
Over and over
Hardening to a foetal
Spherical skeleton
Concertinaed and shifted
In upward contractions
Reaching wet cheeks
Swilled and spat out
Scuttling along the ground
Piddling ghostly trails.

Three Strangers

1

As the patter
of our passing feet fades,
I wonder
how hair on a head so young
could be so mortified to grey.

2

A pity,
that the mystery she weaves
can be dispelled
by a common name
scrawled on her coffee cup.

3

She careens across the street,
louche-limbed,
lush-lidded.
In her eyes,
a glint shines still.

Over It

I’m SO over that, says the girl student, imperious, to her sidekick boy. Y’know? SO past the age where, like, I have to get drunk and emotional. She sighs.

From the other side of the carriage, I smirk. The girl wears an outfit in a style pre-dating my student days. A twenty year cycle; now it’s the hip new thing.

An older woman opposite peers over her reading glasses at the paper. As the girl speaks again, the woman looks up at me. I realise I’m tutting out loud. As my eyes meet the woman’s in the hope of complicity, she drops them, and her mouth twitches into a smile.

The Look Out

I can immerse myself in stones

and pebbles here.
A gathering of tens of thousands
of boulders; rolling, rough but as
meaningful now as a human heart,
a similar size and as rich in history.

To my left a friend is
mapping out the coast;
rock-slides have left a minefield here,
deposits from another age –
but he’ll walk it.
I listen to nothing but the frish
and shush of wave-sets.
I look straight ahead and try
to see France.

The Grump

Lives his life in knives and forks
He often talks a kind of squawk
A clump of a man
Slumped into a beanbag
A complete mess
A face of stress
Going nowhere fast
The grump

Dear Andrex

I think I should tell you
I have been poisoning
Your dog
Because
It Watches me
Poo

Molar-coaster

Julie left the orthodontist clutching her mouth. She hated these visits. Her braces were tightened and the ache lasted for several days. She had always chosen colored bands to go over the train tracks but today she defiantly went with the natural color of the elastic. It was her protest. The truth was that she hadn’t been concerned about her teeth. She would have preferred a hip shaving operation in order to slim down the childbearing beasts housed within inherited chubby thighs. Julie stepped into the passenger seat of the car that her mother sat in, the engine quietly sniggering. The ache in Julie’s mouth continued the whole ride home and her resentment built. With each twinge of pain that eased the crooked pearly soldiers in line, Julie considered another part of her 13 year old complexion that could benefit from alteration.

Julie proceeded through life blaming her parents for highlighting the flaws of her body – for pointing out the imperfections that she had once been blind to. Their casual indifference to ‘correcting’ their daughter lingered, and Julie’s confidence slowly diminished. At first Julie tried extreme dieting – altering her body shape through juice cleanses and cabbage remedies in an attempt to reach what she believed could be perfection. Next it was her lips; they received multiple collagen injections and her face was hardened with repetitive botox. After some careful consideration and a lifetime of self loathing, Julie decided she would be more comfortable as a man. She lived as the opposite gender for over a year and booked a sex change operation with the local consultant. Julie’s mother pleaded with her to only have the breasts removed, but ever defiant, Julie had her vagina turned inside out and made into a makeshift penis. To Julie’s father’s surprise, he actually found his daughter more alluring as a man.

Julian had some real poise. And a perfect smile.

The Anus Scale Chart

o
Sparrow

o
Otter

o
Pig

o
Debbie McGee

o
Leopard

o
Bison

o
Elephant

o
Whale

o
God

John Allison

Gastropods

I watched it so,
As to not be seen.
Cracks of chapped lips,
Received Vaseline.

Now on her face,
Encased in slime,
Two slugs do rest
But not entwined.

Outside the doctor’s

Walking past the surgery
A queue of ailments
Wish I knew what you all had

The Shift

Again in this extended box,
that isolates any chance of my
escape plan mutating alongside
the others here,

whom I know search a similar plea
with empty hands, that struggle
to have their previous contents replaced.

We hold out our callous free palms,
hoping our life lines will be once again rubbed with gold, just enough
to keep any wolves at bay.

But for now, our fingers hover like dragon flies, over the keyboards that are now clogged with dead skin and visible traces of boredom, and the voices then start to pour down the lines with a vaccine-less venom.

And to release each one at will would be a far to easy escape; instead I allow that headset to
melt with my skull, and allow the first hour to take its toll, and lead me once more in this merry dance.

Blue vein

blue_cheese

Admiral of cheeses,
placed on high behind the glass,
your steady survey indifferent
to the taunts of creamy sisters
who flaunt in rows for late night shoppers.
Who are they to me?

You reason in my basket and whisper,
humiliate my bread and beer
with lectures of exalted pursuits
and simple daily pleasures
when rhyming poets walked with gods.

I will not martyr you in modern ovens,
nor melt your maturing angles
(and with it my prejudices)
on burning toast,
but slice your flesh and serve you with a cheerful dried fig.

Alley

  I still hear
          the split of your laugh

the sound of the half-way dead nee alive

      in the smallness
growing, dizzy on dark
          at the back of the old cinema
making homes for strays
and legends
      myths
      unravelling at the hems

our laces brambled tangles
and pockets
       bleeding an unpieced puzzle
on forgotten tarmac
discarded
       debris of our ghosts
turning walls in the day-lit hours
            until our echoes ring faint

and no-one remembers
us
      or the traces that we left.

The other

We’d gone to see it on our way home,
That place he’d held noisome fun before St Vincent ended the party.
Standing on the path, we looked past
His house, the thing we’d come to visit, and elsewhere,
Out onto that palely glowing surface.

When it happened,
When the white sun melted into a sheen and the waves broke
Far away, you took my wrist
And asked me if I felt it,
The soft, cold approach of night
That made our day curl backwards
In on itself. I did.

But that evening had been our friend,
So I kept quiet, not wanting to spoil what was coming,
To leap ahead to darkness and miss the twirl
Of thin, translucent, bright grey silent light.

Emily Jeffrey-Barrett

And then there was light

The Lady of the Night had the darkness wrapped in a colossal handkerchief. She settled the cloth over the town of her creation – because not only was she the Lady of the Night but the lady of life. This was, if truth be told, a rather large hankie, but equally this was a rather large lady. As the fabric fell the light crept in and the sky without moon lay on its back across the ceiling of the town hour upon hour. Shortly before the sun stretched out, creaking its bones, and awaking the belly of fire, there shone a beaming voice shattering the town:

“Ellie breakfast is ready. Hurry up!!!”

Rumbling earth followed briskly beneath their feet. Houses tumbled and bounced and many a person was knocked along the ground. Time passed between the voice and the beginning of daytime, but daytime, they knew, would eventually shine. They were made in her image but on a much smaller scale; she brought so much feeling and hope to the people – the Lady is love!

When the darkness came they only ever assumed peace, quiet…darkness until the slow rising of the light much, much later. Water rushed and dragged homes with it – person after person lost in the swell. She with her mighty hands scooped the crushing, tumbling jar of light from its path of destruction, quashed the mighty waves and soaked up the town. She, the omnipotent – the gentle saviour.

Morning never came gradually, the time to adjust never factored in; it happened in a sudden sweep and those that have been around to testify say that you can see the darkness seep and drag across the blue sky like a magician’s table cloth tugging, pulling in it’s wake the sun from the ocean but leaving the sky un-harmed, leaving the stars and moon in place, hidden and outshone by the brighter. As we now know we have no organic order to control our cycle, there is only her, the Lady.

Film in 140 characters

James Bond, Freddie Krueger, “Dirty” Harry Callahan, Amelie Poullain, Bobba Fett, Sugar Kane Kowalcyk, Dirk Diggler, Patrick Bateman, Jessica Rabbit, Roy Batty, Withnail, Nurse Ratched & R.P. McMurphy, “Cool Hand” Luke, George Bailey, Scarlett O’Hara, Keyser Soze, Atticus Finch, Will Hunting, Martin Riggs, Hannibal Lector & Clarice Starling, Brody & Quint, Harry Potter, Rocky Balboa, Maximus Decimus Meridius, Donnie Darko, Mary Poppins, Ellis “Red” Redding, Marv, Mr Blonde, Cobb, Simba, Oskar Schindler, Jack Carter, The Driver, Phil Connors & The Groundhog, Randy “The Ram” Robinson, Hal-9000, Woody & Buzz, William Wallace, Tony Stark, Blade, Anton Chigurh, Rick Blaine, Tommy Devito, Ace Ventura, Hans Solo & Darth Vader, Ivan Drago, Annie Hall, Johnny Hooker, Michael Corleone, Forrest Gump, Travis Bickle, John McClane & Hans Gruber, Lt Ellen Ripley, Randal Graves, Lisbeth Sander, Luke Skywalker & Princess Leia Organa, Vincenzo Coccotti, Wolverine, Norman Bates, Axel Foley, Marge Gunderson, Ed & Shaun, Jack Torrence, Snake Plissken, Clark Kent, Fast Eddie Felson, Jigsaw, Daniel Plainview, Peter Parker, Don Logan, White Goodman, Leon & Mathilda, The Bride, Frank Booth, Napolean Dynamite, E.T., Dracula, Dr Rumack, Charles Foster Kane, The Elephant Man, J.J.Mclure & Captain Chaos, Batman, Bullet Tooth Tony, Ted, Jason Bourne, Tequila, Edward Scissorhands, Alex Delarge, Peter Venkman, Juno MacGuff, Yoda, Tony Montana, Indiana Jones, Harry Burns & Sally Albright, Martin Q Blank, The Wicked Witch of the West, Neo & Agent Smith, Lt. Frank Drebin, Marty & Doctor Emmett Brown, Jack Carter, Arnie Grape, Tony Manero, The Joker, Susie Diamond, The Dude & Walter Sobchak, Gandalf & Gollum, Marsellus Wallace, Truman Burbank, Wayne & Garth, Holly Golightly, Jacques Mesrine, Harry Lime, Annie Wilkes, Mrs Robinson & Benjamin Braddock, Captain Jack Sparrow, Tyler Durden, Mark “Chopper” Read, Ferris Bueller, Wall-E, The Man With No Name, Ron Burgundy, The Terminator.

mim

she taught me again today, the sea

(i returned like a reformed drunk

still ill with booze but ready for rebirth)

filled with the pomp of learning at

her altar yesterday, i stepped off the

shale ledge to commune with her, embalm.

The judder hyperventilation scramble footing

scraped furrows in clod thick feet

and soles communed with rapid death

to get out. YOU ARE NOT READY

the sun crackled salt skin like a piglet

on the spit, laid out on the trillion gems

that clickered millennia like rollers

casting factory carcasses off to cure. mim

Closer And Less Irritable

Like stubble on shaven genitalia
take the rough with the smooth
in those simple moments
of pleasure

Babes,
I’m a suicide case suited to you
and unpacked I found the light lit
with a match struck off the inside
of your thighs
and the outside of my face
-graze graced
we have that spark
that sandpaper charm

and it’s a true flame
not a lighter, perfect photo finish
or electric heater

just real unphotoshopped people
ugly in places
but smoothed out rubbed down
and repainted
in our own time

let’s go on holiday somewhere shit

so we can reminisce
about the good times
rather than try to recreate them

without realising we

distil nostalgia to be bottled up and aged
lying-in beds made only to be unmade
by making

not a vivid memory,
just a contribution to the bank
to something worth saving up for
that feeling
that we’re happy.

Unbuckle your bra strap
and I won’t wear socks to bed
and we’ll feel sexy for the effort
even though

we’re probably not.

And I’ll kiss you then snore
like a trumpet playing an ode to us
us happy unperfect perfectly happy us

 

James Wheale

J D Wetherspoons

A Haiku Cycle

i (spring)

damp leatherette seat
slowly dries under air-con.
special offer drinks
ii (summer)

a Beer and Burger
served on a sticky table-
J D Wetherspoons
iii (autumn)

aromatic spice
a taste of the orient
it’s raining in Hull
iv (winter)

at opening time
the loyal flock through the doors.
they are there at close

Andrew James Brown

Notice

A letter in her hand,
she walks slowly,
in brave, expensive shoes
to the exit.

Juliet Wilson

Life

The eternal conundrum that what which one calls “life” and that.

If
oranges
are
called
oranges
why
aren’t
lemons
called
yellows

?

John Allison

HSBC Boy

i really don’t know how to
tell you
that i have to stop myself
from
thinking about you,
mostly at night.
You seem to work the
days i go in,
and you look at me
everytime –
and its like wtf am i
supposed to do
i play it cool, too cool and
look at you
like i look at everyone
else,
which is so bad because
you’re not
everyone else,
and by the time i
withdraw cash
you’re sitting down in
your booth
talking to somebody
whose just
moved into London.

Sarah Chapman

The Client We Had To Kill

It wasn’t something we wanted to do
That, my friend, you and I both knew
We didn’t have a choice at all
We made that choice and made the call

You phoned that bloke in Kentish Town
I made the plan and wrote it down
We made a pact right then and there
“She has to go, it’s only fair”

The stupid comments and stupid hair
And stupid questions and stupid stare
The stupid meetings, her stupid voice
Her stupid logic for every choice

She used to leave us seething mad
With moronic points on every ad
We tried so hard to make it better,
You even wrote that lovely letter

But now she’s gone and never more
We killed the bitch, the fucking whore
We knew the cost and up we coughed
Come quarter three, we’ll write that off

Jerry Turner

Come Again

A child of breaking tendencies I grew up
on ‘mols & ‘phens See me?
See ma Ma’ Then the Lord grants me a
Benz
Come rain or shine Come again Come
right on time Come on the five, or on the
ten
You simply must make tea. There’s
no two ways about it. Come full circle,
marmalade accomplice Contrarily; I
doubt it.
Come rain or shine Come again Come
right on time Come on the five, or on the
ten.
I get a little mad at them as, They step
into my night time. Cuppah-OJ-Weet-a-
Bix-Get up and walk the line style I, mean
while..
Come rain or shine Come again Come
right on time Come on the five, or on the
ten
What’s your story, multi faceted. All MOD
cons, no knickers. Bit bitter for strippers..
slip of the tongue. Slip of the tongue.
Come rain or shine Come again Come
right on time Come on the five, or on the
ten
Sit down Fat Larry for I’ve known you a
long time. Furlongs of time, for long is a
long time. But little white ones tire, bore
even like minds.
Come rain or shine Come again Come
right on time Come on the five, or on the
ten
Brightest of boys but must try harder.
There’s no account for this misorder.
House of Lords. House of Strangers.
There’s no ‘Lords’. There’s no saviour.
Come rain or shine Come again Come
right on time Come on the five, or on the
ten
Hold your horses soldier Take one step
back and wave. Now sling your nose up
over your shoulder And keep walking,
dickhead.

Daniel Higginson

Summer Haiku

Warm night air which cloaks
and softens sounds: muffled laughs;
Birdsong; passing cars.

Don’t Forget

Don’t forget the day
she whispered into your ear
short verse is sexy.

Jonny Rodgers

The Amount Of Sugar

Over time I’ve been
gradually reducing
the amount of sugar
I put in your tea.
I think you’re getting
fat but can’t bear
to tell you. This is
my way of helping
you control your
weight.

I Am Your Fear

Marianna Madriz

24 Songs By Bob Dylan

A hard rain’s a-gonna fall.
Baby, stop crying. Can you please crawl out your window?

Desolation row.

Emotionally yours.

Forever young. Girl from the North Country.

Had a dream about you baby.
I wanna be your lover. Jet Pilot. Knockin’ on heaven’s door.

Lay, lady, lay.
Mama, you been on my mind.

Nobody ‘cept you.

Oh, sister.
Peggy Day.
Quit your low down ways.
Rollin’ and tumblin’. Sad-eyed Lady of the Lowlands. Tangled up in blue.

Under the red sky.
Visions of Johanna.
Watching the river flow.

You’re gonna make me lonesome when you go.

Kim Hillyard

The Noodle Dictionary

1. Noodling – a specific event involving noodles.
“Hey, you want to go noodling tonight?”

2. Noodler – a person that proclaims to be a noodle lover.
“ That Christine is a true noodler”

3. Noodledoo – unfocused drawing of noodles made while a person’s attention is otherwise occupied.
“What are those scribbles on your page?” “ It’s noodledoo”

4. Noodletastic – of extraordinary degree.
“That is seriously noodletastic!”

5. Noodlism – the art of eating noodles.
“ Dylan was a true noodlist, he knew the way of noodlism’

Christine Choe

Play

“PLAY BEGINS AND THEN AT
A CERTAIN MOMENT IT
IS OVER.

OTHERWISE IT IS NOT PLAY!

AND PLAY BEGINS WHEN EVERYDAY LIFE IS OVER.”

JOHN CLEESE

Pelin Ergün

Ink And…

Dana Nicola

Grown-Ups Are Weird

“Mummy, why do you call daddy Steve?”

“Because that’s his name.”

“Mummy, why do I call Steve daddy?”

Steve Howson

A Puck-A-Lips

If the world ended
I would have nothing to confess.
Instead, in those fleeting moments
before death,
I would turn to you and ask
“Sex?”

Jessica Cook

Bag For Life

Check you out with your bag for life oh!
What you got inside?
A summer fruit trifle.
Oh my word that sounds delightful, I must get me one of those bags for life oh.
Check you out with your brand new Kindle!
What you got inside?
A bit of Ruth Rendell.
Oh my word that sounds stupendful, I must get me one of those poxy plastic Kindles.
Check you out with your speedy boarding pass!
We’re getting on the same plane mate, we’ll get there just as fast.
You’ve gone from sitting down, to sitting on your arse!
Oh, how I wish I had a speedy boarding pass.

New York

I sat in the pub drinking my beer
and looking at the TV screens
as New York got a hammering from the superstorm.

For all I knew New York could sink
but I would still be here
just me and my beer.

Marc Carver

6 Nov 2012

in a basement gig
on election night
trying to forget about
time. strobe lights
split images, benign
exit signs illuminated.
all i can think about
is you.

Integers at bus stops,
slipping past the crowds,
now down in this cavernous
void you wouldn’t think
was central london. sheltered
from the news, i lock
eyes and some kate bush
comes on. i forget

my heart is a swing state,
i’ve never known what i
wanted. the security of
a home, the passionate
dirty smog of change,
readymade. have another
warm san miguel with me
it can’t matter all the time.

looking back, it does seem
i’ve had a history of
severe anxiety, sitting
by the island in the inlet
at the park, and how
everybody fit together,
and then she said, “all
i’ve read makes me blue”

Serotonin & Dopamine

Belief in something, some sort of faith, an idea of where you are going, trusting where you want to be.
Knowing it’s going to be alright even though life is tough and people are unkind.
Not caring.
Not sharing the same life as someone else.
We are people who can stand on two feet, we are vertical. We are erect.
Don’t follow, pave your own path. A new route.
Enjoy the unkind, see the humour.
Wallowing in the mud will get you stuck.
Take risks.
Move in uncouth ways.
Make people feel uncomfortable.
Fall over on purpose so others laugh at you.
Find what you are good at then get great, find what you are shit at then get good. Progress.
Seem happier than you are.
If you have something to say, write it on a wall.
Swear.
Don’t regret but do apologize.
Find new words, places and people.
Feed your mind, starve those who eat all your ideas, they will only regurgitate them.
Don’t harm anyone’s feeling or bodies.
Be busy.
Fall in love, have your heart broken and learn to move on.
Remember the good forget the bad.
Mistakes are genius.

Doorways

she said
no
after you

she said
pearls before swine
shit before shovel
tears before bedtime

she said
don’t look at me like that
you started it

she said
tonight
when you’re alone
doing yourself
you’ll be doing me

Mr Black

Root Ball Terror

Puddles of earth? More curious than an empty packet of crinkle cut or stray Tesco carrier bloated on sea breeze.

A trail of ericaceous led me to a boisterous four by four. Our infant tree tossed like a badger in accidental murder.

Displaced below street level, his outlook is uncertain.

Angry person, avert your gaze. You are not a postman so don’t open gates, grab plants like turkey necks and hurl them at private number plates.

Five Seven Five

(Leon to his mom)

Inspiration is feeling

I’m feelin you dawg

Dilesh Patel

Tomato

ou say either and I say either,
You say neither and I say neither,
Either, either, neither, neither,
You like potato and I like potato,
You like tomato and I like tomato,
Potato, potato, tomato, tomato!

Because our relationship only exists online.

Callum Copley

Lost

Henry Billington

Sixth Toe

Sanyu Kiyingi

The Reader

signs flicker
metallic, neon
hues
as concrete and wireframe
make love to a half hung
moon
two strangers sit
watching the night fade
the man speaks to her
reads her
every crack and break
&
she chews slowly
over his words
all the while
her heart
marchs
to the beat
of some whimpered
music
that is gobbling at her
soul

Sarah Hardin

Haiku For

the man in the seat in front of me, BA flight 1463, Edinburgh to Heathrow, 31 August 2012

you put your seat back
as soon as we’ve taken off
I learn about you

Andrew James Brown

Too Late

he sits
on the toilet
i’m taking
a bath
she asks me
is there a future for us
requests
i don’t piss
in the water
as she’d like
to get in

i tell her
it’s too late

Mr Black

Writier Than The Sword

Let your pen write,
“The sword is sordid.”

The sword (contrite)
will duly find a forge
and beat itself
into the cutting
(or leading edge)
of a mouldboard
(or turner of topsoil)
and follow the coulter
(or ground-breaking spike)
to the end of the earth

which is just as well
for in war
no-one hears a bloody word
you write.

Philip Burton