Monthly Archives: July 2017

The arrival

Most people think of poety as a delicate thing.  .
Like sugar finely spun into a gossamer silk adorning an ornate wedding cake.
Its splendour to be found both in its intricacy and its fragility.
Even the word poetic, dances upon the tongue elegantly

So I receive gifts of  watercolour paper, inks, sealing wax, calligraphy sets, leather bound notebooks, all of the finest instruments – as those who hear my words believe must be necessary to create beauty, but this is not the reality, my words are not spun like gossamer silk.

They do not arrive softly, tenderly, sweetly, politely.
They don’t beckon gently, make me a cup of tea, and invite me to consider them.

The Words arrive without notice, in the middle of the night, chaotically, loudly.
They jostle me out of bed.
Like a calamity or a boisterous and unpleasant houseguest, who is a loud talker with no filter, whose prattle echoes through a tiny cottage, when you have a migraine.

They words arrive like a circus train through a sleepy town in the wee hours.
Girrafes, elephants, tigers, monkeys, birds.  All with their own call and screech and noise.  All with their own smell and movement.  All with their own desires and needs aching to be met. All trumpeting above one another to have their voice heard.

They are restless, they want to be let out.  They have arrived and they want to breathe free air, and stretch their toes  on the soft grass.  They want to roll in it.  They want to bathe in fresh water  and Not pace and pace in their 4×4 cells that stink of piss and sweat and despair.

The words eviscerate me with their brutality and resurrect me with their exquisite beauty.
Their arrival is nothing less than sacred chaos.



Into the Woods


My insides are like a dark and stormy night that you shouldn’t have ventured out in
The beginning of the well known horror story
Crashes of lightning and thunder
Shivering trees.
Howling winds

The branches crash, hitting me in the face,
as I try to make my way through the woods
How did I end up here?
Feet sunk deep in mud, the kind that sucks the shoes off your feet,
wandering barefoot now,   I am cold and wet and dirty and overhead the storm rages on.

Bramble bushes assault my skin, tiny thistles bury themselves in my hands and neck and arms, the tiniest of slivers buried deep, impossible to see or pluck out,
creating an itch, a heat, that cooks my skin and turns it against me.  Now even my own skin becomes my enemy, scratching at it, scratching as though I would peel it off to get it out, out of me.

And still overhead the rain, the deluge plunging down.
Freezing cold, shivering and shaking, dirty and wet.
Everything around me is sharp, and fierce. And I stumble injuring myself.
And I stumble.  And I stumble.

I leave myself breadcrumbs, by the light of the moon, to find my way back,
out of the woods.
But they are eaten.
By starving, ready creatures, scavenging for any morsel of nourishment.
They scarf down the bread, and show me their teeth, hissing, growling.
This is not a friendly place.  We are not allies.  They are not here to help me.
They steal my resources without a moments hesitation, they would do anything to keep themselves alive, and I don’t blame because so would I.

So would I.



Sometimes, I look at photos and wonder….

Who is that she? That she who is me?
Or at least who wears my face better than I do?

She who is funny and smart, and who works my body like she is walking a runway
While I stumble behind tripping over my inability to keep up.
This she, who is me, but not me.

Not real me who lives in stained pajamas subsisting on toast crumbs and despair
whose days are spent trudging through the mundane tasks of survival, every moment a struggle.
My work is staying alive.  Keeping the faith.
Holding back the deluge just behind my eyes.  Ever vigilant.
A moments respite will unleash the mighty flood and wash away the village.

Nothing will be spared.

She who is me, but not me, throws her head back and laughs loud and deep, the pleasure of the joke cascading through her curves in the most delightful fashion.

She is building a business.  She is planning an adventure of far flung travels.
She is cultivating authenticity.  She is lies upon lies upon lies.

I pile them all on my plate and  voraciously eat them all,
each one making me more malnourished than the last.


This isn’t the kind of love poem where I tell you that I drown in the liquid amber of your eyes, or that your touch makes my skin hum like a hive of bees in a heatwave.  This love is not new and it knows more than eyes and skin, it goes deep, through bloody muscle into bone and sinew. I feel you in my bones because you have rooted yourself there. Made yourself a home in my skeleton, your fingers, know not just my breasts, but the ribs they sit upon, and that greedy muscle whom they cage.

You love me not in spite of my filthy heart  – but because of it­­­.
And I am not easy to love
I am arrogant, vain, dramatic, and exacting.
I am the kind of woman that a Disney illustrator would light from below, surrounded by billowing smoke and cowering henchmen

I don’t take anyones shit – but I am utterly grateful that you take mine.
When my stormy countenance rages and I am thunder
You do not cower, you do not flee, you do not erupt
And when I howl in suffering, my face a river,
You do not go in search of shelter
You weather these storms because these are the seasons of your country

When asked why you don’t prefer a more temperate climate,
You seem genuinely shocked, by so daft an inquiry
She is a wonder you reply.
Her laugh is the  Aurora Borealis, shimmering ribbons of rainbow lights dashing across a velvet sky
Her heart is the mighty Amazon, its tributaries coursing through every part of her body, refreshing her spirit with compassion unbounded
Her shoulder are Everest, snowcapped mountains of the highest height.  Reaching for the moon and landing among the stars.
I live among such transcendence, and you’re concerned about the weather?

For Donna

I was born of  pursed lips, averted eyes, closed curtains, rosary beads, white lace doilies, locked doors, don’t make a scene, do as your told, wait till your father gets home, what happens in the house stays in the house.

She throws her head back and laughs, deep and throaty
Pleasure shaking breasts and the roundness of her belly, a riotous calamity of wildness, mischief and joy

Where did she come from?

She is a symphony of beautiful noise in an otherwise silent room, a brightly coloured bird that somehow flew in through the window of my black and grey world.

She is a filthy joke, a belly laugh, a survivor, a sage,  a sacred trickster dripping in costume jewellery, her platinum blond hair, adorned by a vintage hat.

We were cut from the same cloth – leopard print, undoubtably.
She began my education in the theatre at the age of 6, and  inspired me to be anything but ordinary.
To rage as Lady Macbeth or to grieve as Othello, no human emotion was ugly so long as it was honest.

I learned that conformity was as ineffective a means of preventing persecution as it was a tiresome habit, and so I embraced all the more passionately those things that others tried desperately to hide. And that life was all the more enjoyable when injected with a healthy dose of whimsy.

Those who are determined to hate you, will find a reason.  So you may as well live Boldy.

I didn’t go to the funeral.  She wasn’t there anyway.  And people would tell me she’s at peace.  And I couldn’t agree.  If anything, she’s at mirth.  Always was.  But try saying that at a funeral.

I leave her thimblefuls of whisky, the good stuff.
I never miss a curtain call.
And I burst into laughter as often as I can.