Corpy Green

Upstairs on the back of 60’s buses
bare legs stuck to vinyl seat
little hands curled round chrome handrail
reflecting back
my mother
in headscarf and pencil skirt
black kohl eyes
and sling backs
that faraway look on her face
like a tribute to
Rita Tushingham


Comparative Study

I try and write beauty
like the others

but my version of it
comes out tainted by life’s heartbreaks

stanzas surface like
mottled abrasions

it’s in the eye of the pen holder

Untitled (Female Figure)

another charcoal & sugar paper affair
sketching out
a barely known
stretched like a canvas
half naked
on a Byzantine bed
shading white space with lead
under guise of artist
and inclined nude model
creating forgery in dry medium
the visual path
lined up from behind her back
and mine

By the Bye

Been jaded
by words
by your words
by your empty words

by products
by omission

by your own admission


Nobody does numbness
with quite as much feeling as him
popping his observations
from the blister pack of life
take the edge off this malaise
snapped in bits

We apologise for the interruption in service

everything can turn on a sixpence
years melt
in the blink of an eye
and the you
you knew
is altered
barely recognisable
mirrors lie
people drift away
bored by the misery
petrified it will leach onto them
seep into the fabric of their photoshopped lives
they want to remain unaffected
by life’s true complexities
a problem shared
is no longer halved
it’s an inconvenient whole
interrupting self absorption

Piecing together

Poets should never get involved
because when it all goes sour
they tear each other apart with words
leave the guts of their relationship
spilled out
for strangers to post mortem
and the body of their future work
will be mutilated into fragments of the past
piecing together
that which led
to their death by misadventure

Grime Gentrified

What’s the obsession
with aligning
fake perfection
what happened to all the
and poets
the grimy architects of subculture
who ripped up the rule book
set it alight
like an incendiary device
stoking the fire in their bellies
and ours

Word Crush

Sometimes I think that all poetry is shit
I fall out of love with it
especially the social media driven renaissance kind
plastic writers like me
jamming up a page
with cloying sentiment
metaphors and analogies
already used a million times stereotypically
then you appear
harpooning letters into galvanized birds
hanging fissured stanzas
and between the lines
you got me sentenced
once again


I am too fragile for this
it cracks me
bleeds into the place
where secrets are kept
insecurities held in check
in all honesty
I’m a hostile witness
to the complexities
of your truth

Last Orders

A fumble
that meant more to me
than to you
full blown sex
seriously lacking prowess
just a pastime
to pass time
last orders
pub opening hours

Shift Breaks

our time together was preserved
in shift breaks
somewhere between
Saturday nights
Sunday afternoons
fragmented memories
of vodka sessions
places we invaded
with the arrogance
reserved for youth
my clearest recollection
is of your arm
wrapped round my shoulder
white shirt
crisp against my neck
waiting for me to crumple it

Personal Effects

We lay in feotal unison
bedroom door halfway shut
the bulb in the hallway
casting light through the frame
creating witness
to the clothes we had worn
crumpled on the floor
like shallow puddles in the darkness
punctuated by belts and heels
cheap jewellery
house keys
personal effects
strewn randomly
except for the wallet she bought you
flipped open next to the bed
her polaroid face staring out at me


My favourite part of the day
was the darkness
our fingers would lace
palm to palm
legs tangle
and your breathing
on the edge of sleep
filled the room
in HD
only then
did I feel in control
you imprisoned in bedsheets
with me as solitary

Watered Down

Want no part of love diluted
by fear
with past heartbreaks
or future indiscretions
I’ve met that kind before
turned myself inside out for it
invested more than I had to lose
used it
like a razor blade
on the skin of a cutter
dragged it across my flesh
carving in your name
and the myriad of scars I left
all that

Opposite Coasts

You and I
left pieces of ourselves
in the poetry we read
and dedicated
to each other
in songs we claimed
for their hidden messages
littered throughout lyrics
there are
pastiches of us
pasted over the artworks we digested
diaphanous layers
like a collage of lust
in airless galleries
on opposite coasts

In duplicate

Thread by navy thread
watchface chamfer
footsteps fall in my footprint
echoing motion
I am scanned
my essence duplicated
and adopted
I no longer standalone
I am cloned
being the sincerest form of flattery
I’m told

Dirty Secret

sewn together
with invisible stitching
dirty secret
single ply construction
a tromp l’oeil
designed specifically
deceive the eye

Fleshed out

Precious bones
fleshed out
laying next to me
and muscle
in repose
just a hair’s breadth
of separation
between us
that holds enough electricity
to light up the world
or mine
at least