Tuesday 25 October 2016

Snapshots: In collaboration with Lara Usherwood


Giant crystal dagger points with the whole world inside- clouds and cutting blue and sharp colour that kills shadow- angular lines of concrete begin and end in each other- industrial mechanisms and industrial strength- masks the whispers of moss and roots that edge through the cracks in a begging effort to be heard- and I do hear them in mice language they call to me and echo footprints and I smell earth- I do- even when there is only a crack in the sky- it smells like fresh wind on the washing line and rotting apples underfoot. Gliding above me with effortless flaps and dainty bristles of silk-swan feathers- birds swoop and slide and I think of that noise of the tongue- the click-clock of horses hooves- and I do it and feel childish though I’m alone.
    If it is sun it is yellow and not calm- it is more of a still storm that hasn’t begun- tea leaves at the bottom of the cup- sunken stories still asleep- earth on my cheeks like stains of adolescence- fighting the urge to place any sense of these sun-spots and dark vacuums- somehow it is quiet- somehow I am free.
    If it was cold I would hug my knees but instead I sit like a statue and breathe- thick questions threaten to beat me- wretched stick that I am- fallen leaves that I now call my bath. There is a sense there is a sense and as now very real very touchable alarms sound, and feet pummel concrete, I am drawn to the roof of my mouth- my pallet- click-clock and it echoes.


What do you leave me with? I bear the brunt of your punish- between margin lines and estimated times- far from the drying cups on the draining board- the stray cat hairs brushed off your jacket- I stand- misjudged- as you scrutinise with bared teeth.

    Why see me so? We had years of abandoned life and decisions to let go- now all I feel is grasps- this skin is not my own and as I attempt to dance defiant I feel the cracks and they show, I still feel your long hands- somewhere there is the rumble of your hands clapping- the metallic tang of a singing bowl- suddenly sinister and flawed.

    What are those guns made of? Material or not, I know I’m on trial, and no, I have not grown up enough to face it- my shoulders are bare and you know how I shiver. 

    With all the scans and prints and sparks in the dark-

     Why would you leave? 


I took his order with a bored kind of zeal- a lazy interest in the way his eyes rested on a specific part of my ribcage- at the dip and groove and curve of my breast- where I know lies a chalky moon of rubbed-off deodorant. Mushroom omelette and Earl Grey tea. I glanced at his beard and felt queazy at the thought of egg getting stuck in the bristles. His dog barked at me outside when I let him in. It was chained up- an Alsation- and I bounced back inside, my heart racing- I’m scared of dogs I said, breathless, like he ought to know. I showed him to a table round the corner where the lights are dim- I didn’t want to see his face- I felt I could not forgive it in a flourescent glow. There was something about him that made me act sour and yet I asked him- how do you like your eggs? Can I get you some toast- brown? Buttered? Milk in your tea? Sugar? I let him gobble me up like an apperitif but I could feel some throbbing sludge under the waistband of his jeans that reminded me of where I stood- hovering above- eagerly awaiting his desires for the day. 

All photos by Lara Usherwood


Friday 19 August 2016

Poems from Colombia

Medellin #1

A kiss like an outpouring of tongues
Clawed at as I push away

A Dali moustache leads me home
One feather earring, and liberal

Passing lit-up garages
Empty with spilt oil

Hollow and blank, that five o’clock anthem
Beating like shallow techno

The only thing clear, or half-clear,
I could carry on…no more to ruin

Straddling daylight, moon still there
Cuddling modest clouds
Shining past its bedtime

The delicious failure of sunlit walks
In familiar territory, a playground

Greasy fingers in bed, inhaling
Automatic fan makes the heat lazy

Narrow room with no windows
Only curtains flapping like loathsome moths



Medellin #2

Swimming beans with a chorizo sausage
And too-clean rice,
A taste not your own

A clock with no hands glowing there
Church-like on Calle 9

Roaring and capitalizing,
Capsizing and the leaves all lit-up like autumn

Some world found out
By those from outside

Fresh coffee and other bottled smells

Under rough roofs and repair shops,
Stray bits of string, frayed edges,
Palm trees and a sunbathing banana

Men dressed like plastic women,
Square buttocks and waxed

Over consuming within your means
Faces that tell stories and don’t

Sanding floors and scraping paint
(Oily paint casts a stain
As the tap lets it run)

And there´s lightning like reminders

Your heart beats and your limbs numb
Alone and swollen and completely not wondering