Broken, but healing.

Sometimes I must look to the birds beauty in flight
refresh in distraction from our grounded plight
a flourish of feathers lightens my heart
all I need is the skies work of art.


Someone kicked the socket and the land went still
all and everything went hush electrics gas distilled
awash of nothing buzzing the tick of life moved on
flowers bloomed unplugged neon motions gone.


Environmentalism, sold alongside the rest, not as a replacement, but in addition to all the plastic preferred by the ever-more vacuous populous. Sold by the same machine that sells bleach and weedkiller. Green is a fashion statement soon to be piled high at the dump, alongside the rest of the used up trends. Yet, a trend can take root, a phase can use it’s sense to prevail, to stay, a trend can spread like ivy on the ugly concrete, stifling the old, suffocating and snuffing the old senseless way. A trend can become normal, the old shown ridiculous, extinct, we can still save it all if we think.


Black folded paper alight from the tree
a gaggle of rooks wind blown origami.


Driving between the countryside’s burgeoning banks, I get the feeling from the ground that we are not getting any more permanent than we have ever been to this world. We cling to this idea of permanency, we long for longevity. We build to be solid, of brick, of concrete and steel, yet all that we made would be eaten up without a mark left in no time at all. We are distressed by all that grows and all that decays, all that changes day by day. To mother earth a million turns is a flash, wiped clean, reset and renewed.


Leaves are playing in the street again, playing chicken with the cars, to be fair, none of them have been hit yet, oops, I spoke to soon, there goes Peter, trapped in a grill.


Newly grey walls stink of fresh paint, the wipe clean floor still tacky. The slick new door lock tumbles with a crisp snick. I am escorted into the metal chair. The police leave me, locked in, another chair and a table for company. To the right a large dark window. A man on the other side looks straight at me, checks his hair. A second man looks past me, looks at the first guy and shakes his head. One way glass is particular.


Meet Pie

In 2213 the world is automatically automated, manual is historic, there is a problem. The factory stopped, without knowledge of the workings, with no fix for the fixer, there are no more pies emerging.
In another town, in another country, experiment lives on and discovery still blooms. Doctor Jarved Ecclblom has made one just now. He looks down at the pie he has made, the pie looks back at him. Theory in Jarved’s head is now real and tangible. All the how’s and when’s are gone, evaporated, replaced with now what?
Jarved remained standing, looking at his pie, the pie asks “Who am I?”, “You are a pie .. my pie” Jarved replies. The pie ponders this, “I am a pie yet I have thought, am I alive?” Jarved gazes at Pie Smith 1, “Yes, you are alive”. Sharing this discovery, for Doctor Jarved Ecclblom, was problematic. The world seemed learned and grown, yet still not ready for a sentient pie. Rights are hard to come by, historically they were not easily given over to woman nor beast. in a courtroom, again, a judge resides. Judge Malcolm East contemplates what life is, for a pie, For hours it seems that the majority claimed this pie to be defiant foodstuffs, fearing perhaps vegetation would talk, a domino effect leading to starvation. The pie in his closing remarks said “Yes, I may be delicious, yet am I not of free thought? Do I not carry the spark of life gifted to me, do I not deserve the right to choose to live?”
In conclusion the Judge decreed, that yes life is life, not to be taken for mere flavour or sustenance, Pie Smith 1 will be granted sentience, officially having the rights of any citizen. Any attempt on his life to be murder, not merely a means to quash a stomach rumble. So that day at half past an hour gone noon, Pie Smith 1 emerged from the courtroom free.
Time passes, one week and two more, Pie and Jarved speak in the lounge. Pie tells Jarved “I am not feeling well, not well at all, each day I am worse than the last. Perhaps I am going off?” He joked. Jarved stroked his beard and thought “You are unique and unknown, even to me, you know you more than I could ever do about you. Do you have a clue what I might do to help?” Pie sat and thought, looking as solemn as any pie has ever looked. In time he spoke “I think that if I do not improve in one day, I should like you to eat me, as my choice, as a free being”. Jarved is physically thrown back by this statement, he goes pale and leaves the room. A few weeks later, Jarved is walking the pavement into town, when a concerned lady asked “How is Pie?”, “Delicious” Jarved replied.



Theoretical Realism

I lie on a bed, in a room, waking. Wooden floors stretch from wall to wall, showing the grain of once being a tree. The ceiling is painted white, as are the walls. They are clean, yet not new. A window looks to a slate sky, split with bare winter trees. I sit up in the bed, the metal bed, sleep still resides with me as I look around. I notice, there is no door.
There is no sign of there ever being a door, there is no other furniture, no other object, no sockets, no light switch. My heart flutters and skips, perturbed.
I get up and knock at the walls, all the walls. My knuckles sting at the solidity, of every inch of solid wall. Petulant kicks send pain from my bare feet. While my foot throbs, I sit and listen, for noises, for voices, for laughing. I hear nothing at all. Through the window, I see I am several stories above a field below, I watch for a time, I see no one at all. Turning back to the room, to the bed, the bed is my only tool, my only weapon. I tug and twist at the metal frame, forcing my hands into cramp grasping and twisting, till in tiny squeaking movements a ball atop the bed frame begins to unscrew. I take this grenade in my hand and turn to face the window. With all my might I hurl it with a vengeful force, striking it flush centre, it ricochets back at me, glancing off my hip bone, drawing a painful pitiful cry from deep within my guts. The sky outside is darkening, the day is leaving, tomorrow I’ll try the floor, first I must rest. On the mattress on the floor, sleep comes and takes me away.
I lie on a bed, in a room, waking.


From everything
we have built nothing
soon there will be nothing left
everything will be gone.


Our destination is destruction
there is no other way
when we first crafted machines
we marked our end of days.


In a dream the world is full, not a superficial veil. All layers of everything and everyone are there to see, a depth unexplainable, a sense unobtainable. Disorientating and disturbing to see all the darkness and shadow in everyone’s soul surrounding me. In an ever swirling confusion I found no grip and woke.

Patient Mountains

I love to spend some time with the stone
to sit with the rocks the mountain’s bone
to settle with centuries of patience alone.


We have no measure for enough, there is always more to be had, we chase the ever-elusive enough. Though it’s opposite, not enough, we do have a measure of, hunger, starvation, squalor and death, they tell of not enough. Such a loaded scale.


Two flies sit and ponder. “I wonder why we are here, what we are for really? Is there some grand plan, unimaginable to our singular brains, only known to our deepest nature, steering us subconsciously over a multitude of generations?” The other fly ponders this and replies “We are surely here for some reason, not to be crushed in a million meaningless cycles, not to merely fly, not to just eat the discards of the slow masses. Yes there must be some greater cause generations away, incalculable years away that we cannot yet begin to fathom”. They then partake of a rotting cabbage leaf, before going out of sight, beyond the recycling.


I have had enough lethargy, sitting and undoing, I resolve to engage in some exercise, some meaningful undertaking of sweaty action. I lay down and on my very first crunch, my first sit up, I fart. This undermines and demoralises me to such an extent, I go sit back on the couch.


That’s the thing with dead ends,
ignoring the signs makes the end no less dead.


This shining edifice we have built, that we enjoy, it is beautiful yes. Yet we now know it was built with our mother’s bones, we know it is fed her meat to maintain it’s glossy splendour. We shudder to think what would happen if we did not keep feeding it, if we pulled the foundation from beneath it, we are trapped by our pride and our fear of having to start all over again.


Though the hill is high on the island we reside, the tide is coming. Those on the top of the hill can see this more clearly than any of us. Though, by the time their toes are wet, they will have had their fill of fun and we will all be gone.


The time ticked as the hands swept, towards the momentous day. Lights shone and banners hung, people drank and children sung. The tree sparkled with tinsel and ribbons, presents waited in shining paper with bows and tags, expectant, bursting with magical potential. On the eve the air grows louder still, brighter and as thick as treacle, till all eye lids fail and fall closed. We wait with our dreams, the land is silent but for the creaking and heaving of time fit to burst. As the sunlight hits the land, the day flares into life, all the straining magical packages erupt in an explosion of paper and ribbon. To be .. just things, merely ordinary things. The paper chains sag, the bulbs go out, the tree’s needles lie dead on the floor, I promise myself, I will not be fooled by this trick anymore.


I seem a long way from June
yet I know she’ll be here soon
to bring summer in her smile
I haven’t seen her for a while.


So prone to imagination, exaggeration and tales, we keep up two temperature scales. To bring warmth to a story, thirty five would not do. It is eighty, ninety, one hundred and two. Fahrenheit is our scale of fire, to tell how the heat is much higher. So cold it as cold as ice, zero degrees, not twenty five, not thirty, not a temperature to keep alive. Centigrade is our scale of cold, to tell the weather is not for the frail or old.


They will pay for soul sucking games, TVs and gadgets,
then refuse to pay the artist for the reparation of the soul.


In this time of reaction, prejudice and racism, a time we thought historic. The caring are being turned against each other by the divisive folks, the ones offended at change. They formulate exaggerated terms, demands no one has made, to tar all change ridiculous, to stem the flow of acceptance. A poisonous brew we must not sip.



Yule Meditation

Chewing on my cheek and scratching my nose, I might concentrate on regaining my equilibrium, I contemplate uncoiling my legs. Was that a vision or my imagination? I don’t want to disappoint the shaman. Incense fills my nose, my eyes and my clothes, it facilitates the mood, teases the loops from my strings. My tight lids open a crack, to scan the room, I see no one else is moving, no one else stirs, I think I lost the game, or perhaps there is disharmony in our peeking. Yet there is sincere intent in their face and demeanour, I am sure they do not peek, how do they not peek? I resolve to keep my eyes snugly closed till the chimes. Impatience impinges on my wait, my knees, my hips hope for time’s swift fall. I detach in time, float a little and I am speaking to ghosts as the chimes go ting.


It is amazing how much truth can be constructed from lies when one has a vested interest. A very realistic looking weave of unrelated facts, at a glance impregnable, true. Yet when the lie is found and rooted out, the construct tumbles and falls, dispersing like feathers from invisible fowl.


‘Impotence’ they state of the shouts of complaint
from the descent from a chair in a room out in nowhere
yet without these seeds of disgust the discussions are snuffed
you wish to keep those sprouts from the sun? before change can become
thought stagnates to just the drab day to day, leaving all imperious devils to play.


Being yourself is not an act of aggression or of defiance. Just being yourself is freedom.
When the bound take offence at your freedom, there is no need to react, they are the bound, you are free.


Looking through the books, the scribes describe our path from start to end, the dips and curves, the time where we ascend. Romantic to imagine that there are markers, single points where change occurred, believing times ribbon could be fractured, is really quite absurd. The end is already written, no erasing dried up ink, the ending is explosive, all over in a blink.


Once the words are sown
the sentences bloom
to each a different scent
to each a unique meaning
each storied bouquet
is true to you.

Christmas Selection

Now is no worse than any other time, there are dictators, there is murder and torture, there has always been. Yet there has always been humour, always been joy. Being here, we can gather comfort from all around the globe, or the disc, if you are that way inclined, hopefully there is no inclination to the disc, or we would all roll to one end.. There has never been much care for the poor, even in the good old days, when we would pull our own teeth. Music thrives in every environment, lifting us out, bringing us together. Mostly now is worse, as we are here now, now is everything as neither tomorrow nor yesterday are at the door. Try not to knit a world of miserable wool in hate filled patterns, there are many vibrant colours, many silly joyful patterns, the ugly jumpers are not ugly at all, but fun, do not cuff yourself with cool, cool is blinkered, cool is grey. Now if we wish, we could dance while we burn, folks might wonder why, but check out those moves, how good they look in flames


For times too many
he was not nice
one Christmas eve
they visit thrice
from past and now
from yet to be
ghosts came to him
to make him see
life’s present path
is not yet set
spin morbid habit
avoid regret
on christmas morn
a brand new start
the spirits gift
the cruel a heart.


A charming land where snow cap peaks paw at the sky, deep valleys display a lush expanse, where boundless enigmatic deserts reside, lakes of cerulean mirrors capture the eye, look in awe to redwood tree’s infinite canopy, to carmine canyons carving for miles, to where rivers tumble in rainbows down the mountain side, where it is so green and so golden, such bright paradise, glorious and majestic. If I found this land, I would be tempted to steal it too.


Crowded places are not for me
heaving around the Christmas tree
Some love the swarming intensity,
what is wrong with you?
are you a fu**ing bee?!


‘Eat me’ .. ‘Drink me’
the label says to us
on the tongue delicious
then we’re thrown
under the bus
luminous psychedelic
it takes us on a trip
down into the rabbit hole
don’t we all love
poison’s craftsmanship.


There are many alleys I have not walked, I was not tempted to them as some are, to me they are foreboding, while others, for others they are interesting. Perhaps ironically, my fear and pessimism, kept me from having to back out of these alleys. I watch from a throne of self satisfaction, as others desperately read of how to extricate themselves from these frightful alleys, how to untangle themselves from the twine of their open eyed inquisitiveness. Funny how fear can be a retrospective virtue.

Baba Yaga

I had been walking all the day, lost in the forest, yet lost is a state of mind, for I had time, I said I would be back in ten minutes, yet I was enjoying the freedom of just seeing, hearing and smelling the wild places. Shards of light from high above cast shadows across the fallen leaves, the shadows from the leaves yet to fall. Unnamable birds sing to each other, high up out of sight where they carry for miles across the canopy. With each step, each breath fills my nose with the forest’s aromatic pine and the heady decomposition of the forest’s detritus. I could stay here forever, safely away. My only thought is of my joy. The sun has made it’s arc across the canopy, soon it will take it’s final dive into the horizon, to give night it’s time to play. I have no hunger in my stomach, no shiver in my bones and my flashlight is by my side to light my way, I am unafraid. In the early twilight a deer shares a moment with me, she steps cautiously, keeping her eye to me till she knows me a little, some time to know I am neither wolf nor jackal. Her fur is so bright, so orange, even in the fading light, so young she is still in her speckled form. Her elegant mother appears from the darkness to beckon her away, back towards the shadows.
The approaching night had not enough light for my day time eyes, till moonlight comes and gifts me sight in prussian blue. The leaves still crunch beneath my feet, though the birds have sung their last, time for birds to roost and deer to stick close to their mothers. Crunch crunch crunch, I continue on, what was once pine fresh is now turning, to something sulphurous, something burnt, something off kilter. I stop, now I hear nothing at all, no hoot of an owl, no scrabble of feet and no wind in the trees. Through a gap in the pine, an odd pair of trees resides, the bark appears so gnarled after seeing so much straight pine, even the hazel dotted throughout, does not look as lumpen as this. As I walk closer, what I thought to be branches are a cabin, of sorts, spread across the two trunks, a cabin with an unattainable door fifteen feet in the air, how odd. There is no flutter in my heart, a cabin is a cabin. I stare at the door and ponder a way up. There is no light from the windows, therefore, no one is home. Silently I stand in the moonlight, pondering my thoughts, when from high up I hear a swirling scraping noise, like rocks rubbing together, what odd bird makes this sound, not the silent flight of an owl, not the soundless bats. In a forest of silence, the scrapping from above gets louder, nearer. I wonder what bird it could be.
Switching on my flashlight, I scan the branches above me, yet who has caught a bird in night flight in a scanning searching beam of light? Nothing but the twisted limbs, but then, a shadow flows across my sight. Something appears with the scrapings cease. Something I cannot believe, a large bowl, of sorts, hovers. Perched atop, wielding a stone staff, an old crone glares down at me, just above my head. She is the ugliest thing I have ever seen, Her skin a map of a thousand battles, her back twisted as an elder tree, her moles have moles of their own, her endless crooked nose curls accusatorially towards me. I stand stone silently, fathoming the hows and the whys when the silence was broke, as to me she spoke, “I know you” She said in a dark stoney penetrating voice, “I know you do not fear the woods, you do not fear the dark, you do not fear the snakes, you do not even fear me.” As the moonlight flickered with passing cloud she came to be the most beautiful woman I have ever set eyes on, elegant, elfin, sublime without fault. I went to interject, but nothing arrived to my throat, no complaint and no grumble. She continued in a voice as light as a breeze, “You shall stay, you shall only think of what may be. I will go to town, I will go to your family, your wife, your two children. I may reassure them that you are well. I may not be caring to them in the least”. In one wink of the moon the ugly crone reached into her mortar, scooping a handful of grain, cast over me in black magic rain, the spell roots me in place, and here I remain. Her bowl carries her high and away, into the moonlight, I hear she begins to grind the mortar against the pestle, rising far far away, till there is no sound at all, but my blooming thoughts.


Just three weeks into the voyage, Lt John Prince is the final victim of the gas leak. I will be alone for the next three years, if I choose to continue. I am unsure if the other five are the victims or myself, I wonder if their souls will make it back to Earth, or if they will forever drift in vacuum, though I am not one for philosophy. Nor am I one to cling to human contact, to yearn for company, yet it is a long way to go and I get a thousand miles further away from the nearest human every second. The only thing I have to hold on to is the fact there are people at the rendezvous, three years away, one thousand and ninety five days, twenty six thousand two hundred and eighty hours. My head can make it, I am sure, I think I am sure. But my heart, my heart has never been so isolated, even in the most remote place on Earth, it knew there were hearts, my heart could feel their warmth, feel the energy of humanity around it.

Following protocol, the crew’s bodies have been jettisoned, sent to reside in the sanctity of space. Sanctity has been endowed upon the vacuum, as the craft cannot cope with the decomposition of flesh, and neither can I. “It is what they would have wished for” is printed in the manual. Honestly I would prefer to be buried beneath the tree up on the hill by where I grew up, to watch the next generation play, as I feed the tree with me. The new pipe is holding well, I am confident it will hold for the entirety of the mission and more. Such an anomaly to have something so robust fail, in a sea of fragility the strongest part failed, baffling.

It has been thirty four days since the unfortunate occurrence, things are going very smoothly now, so smoothly routine is settling on me like moss, yet the ship’s routine is as essential as breath, I do not bore of that. The gaming console has an infinite number of activities, yet they all feel the same to me now, a wash of pixel from a wave of a hand, all the same. I am further away from another human than anyone has ever been, but I do not feel alone now, there is something or someone there now, there or here, my heart can feel it. I wonder when I will see them.



Locked out in my dressing gown, still the rain comes down,
the rain it has no heart, it surely wishes me to drown,
I pray and kick the door real hard, the rain comes harder still,
please let me back in my house, I don’t have time to kill,
I holler and throw some stones, but alas no one is home,
I think I will catch my death of cold, I am soaked down to the bone.


I am sat watching the water warm
the kettle the water warmers form
it idles over a naked flame
the temperature remains the same
from three o’clock to half past four
I cannot watch this any more
this kettle will not boil today
I did not want tea anyway.


Krampus Time

The house is soaked in silence, there are no starry twinkles in the window pane, the clouds cloak the world in an obsidian sky. The bed creaks the fidgets of a sleepless night. Straining my ears I can just catch the tick of the clock in the next room. The tiny ticks count the seconds and minutes I lay awake, till sharply, there is a sound. A scraping from the roof, perhaps a falling tile or a wayward tree. A clip then a clop stills my heart. He is a little early I fancy. I hear a rattle a jangle, sounds more like a chitter than the tinkle of bells. Do I pull the covers up tight in hopes of an evaporating dread, or venture out to confront the yuletide intrusion. The traveling jangling clips and clops across the roof, draws me from my bed. In the hall there is no sound at all, peering into the lounge a break in the cloud brings the hearth into focus, as a clatter sends soot down the flu. Keeping my gaze to the chimney, I duck behind a chair, and listen. In a scuffle and thrump something large lands heavily in a cloud of soot. Uncoiling with a cough, a tall dark figure emerges. Flicker of moonlight reveals dark hair and rising horns. Can it hear my heart? How can he not hear my heart? It is thumping in my ears as I try to quieten my breath. I duck down as he scans the room, his yellow eyes are bad enough, without that, that serpentine tongue, seemingly tasting the air in the room. Adrenaline is racing through me, as I crawl around the back of the sofa. I see it look to the door, He drags a cloth sack behind him, the contents wriggle some, just a little, as he strides towards the hall. I hunker down and listen, tying my heart down. I hear his chains jangle and the long drawn out noise of a sack being pulled from room to room, a cullomping in the bedroom, a tinkle in the kitchen, a chattering in the bathroom, a clattering in the office. It seems like an eternity of anticipation, when he will return to me. The sound nears, his chains metallic chimes almost deafening, in silence it pauses, I hear what might be a sigh. Peering through the gap between cushions, I see him come back. His amber eyes take one last look around, locking with my peering eye. We hold the gaze for between a moment and a year. I hold my breath as he turns, to walk towards the fireplace, in grunts and groans he wriggles back up, dragging the wriggling sack, without turning back. I let my breath back out and return to my bed.


Throughout the land children are writing, writing begging letters to Santa, ‘Please I want this, please I want that’. They ignore who they should be begging to, they should write ‘Please don’t stuff me in a bag, please don’t take me away, please don’t beat me Krampus!’.


I spied a scarab beetle laying in the bin, all iridescent blue with twisted gnarly limb, but no, it was just a foil sweet wrapper, benign and without sin. In the bedroom a ghost hung darkly leering peering in, but no, it was just my coat hung upon the hook, no harm to me again. In bed my foot sticks out from the bed’s within, a chill quickly grasps at my exposed shin, was this just the frosty midnight air? Not at all … now nightmares begin.


The incessant rain keeps coming down, not in sheets, not in hammers, no cats and no dogs, but a constant drizzle keeping everything wet all day and all night, day after day. A perfect environment for moss, mould and mildew to breed, bringing belongings to ruin. Once solid wood soaks and melts into the mud, even brick flakes to nothing. A world for newts and toads. I wish for a break in skies endless slate, a strip of sun to boil this moisture to steam. I miss the deep blue skies, the crisp shadows on the path, even the dust in my eyes, the things that remind me of beautiful drought.


Your cachinnation is in stark contrast to the meagre jocoseness residing.