Our Cemetery of Companions

You will allow yourself
to re-settle
into old comforts
on his threadbare sofa

and then enter into
a layered removal
from this other man
full of arguments –

from a disagreeable
who lives uneasily
by designing trip hazards
and elephant traps

In that room air will double
beyond that level
required for meditation
and a balanced life

Find a neutral buoyancy
by letting your lungs
half-fill with his kisses
Do not sink to him

Portraiture

Those days of old kindnesses
are not stroked into any recall
by my finest of sable brushes –

not weighted by sweet squeezes
of rollable toothpaste-ish oils –
now it is my turn to sweep colour

inside out – now that other tongues
have given up their generous ways
Take my hand – my copier of colours –

and let if cover your unkind mouth
There are no gilt frames to contain
your cold-hearted complaints

Excoriate

Do not throw anger
back at your other
unless you are ready
to stoke their ire –
redoubled surelye
by your avoiding eye?

Do not find focus
by pin-pricked pain –
held in narrow
concentrations –
unbroken – then set
to scorch again

Your steady point
of magnified aims –
that glass you do not
use to explain –
instead is held
to summon a flame

Do not mark your other’s
yet burnt skin
with borrowed light –
such scarring
will not fade
with time’s passing

Let us idle by pints
and half-cubed shorts
to steady our nerves –
to refine our remarks
and look without trying
to see less censed lies


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Cancellations

There’ll be
no anniversary –
it was a date
you always forgot

No doubling
of wrapped largesse –
I always gave you
far too much

You still wear
those gifted stones
Does their weight
not bother you?

Dimmed jewels
set in your flesh –
whilst you grip
another fool

There’ll be
no family parties –
no dates fixed –
no invites sent

Your time is given
up to strangers –
it is with them
you’ll celebrate

Marbles

Dignity is my now tattered flag –
white by surrender’s tradition –
a message to my sworn enemies –
now limp over my fallen nation

You rolled unbroken like mercury –
vermillion in my palm – as poisonous
and ungraspable as quicksilver
You then scattered as if flick-struck

in a bent-to game of clicking marbles –
a crackshot with one eye open aims
to split our glass constellation
and to win with a swift ball bearing

My treasures rattled in an old sweet tin –
now my drugs settle in a smaller one
There are games set to be unwinnable
by that first spread of an opponent’s hand

Concupiscence

I study there in your sudor pool
which through this night is drip-fed

off your hips and thighs in twists
where your legs are no more your legs

but become – as shown in textbooks
your annotated groin – with pointers

Here is your barrow – lightly grazed
Here is your sliced mound – raw

In my geography – in my history –
in my biology classes – I looked away

Now – older – I work at my lessons –
although I am coming to them late

on this foundation course – of sorts –
of how-to and not-to evening lectures

You kneel down – as my flesh lectern –
and with your open mouth

help me regain my lost confidence –
under instruction – you guide me in study

I Said

Those three words
were declared
too quickly for you
by my slow tongue –
with a cluck of uv

Spilt – splattered
like my milk
from my missed
breakfast spoon –
three spills
mopped by you

Let them dry
and mark our time –
still too short of hours
to curdle
to ferment
to be quite – yet

those three words
were spent
by my slow tongue
having found
no other words
to gift to you

To Sleep

Entwinements of sweat
fill this floatation tank –
flooded by drips off sex

as we lap at salt and skin
with gluttonous tongues
in our unbashful fucking

All we see is unseen
fingering and penetration
in our deep-diving minds

as we couple-up into eases
of our ache-numb limbs –
softening in worn lips

We fall into that sudden sleep
of found love’s discomforts –
Never wake from such reverie

Picking Fruit

There must be a word
for that gritty-ish crackling
of a blackberry’s uncomfortable
remnant – unground – jammed –
bloody unsuckable
from your pitted left molar –

stuck among soot succulences
and odd-chanced bitternesses
Seasonal pickers had a word
for every moment of pleasure –
and one for inequal measures –
such piques are now called love