1,000 New Church Road, Hove

His twisting right foot
takes him past that door
where she had twice –
maybe more
quick-scurried through

up double-took steps
to a fat goatee face
which she’d anointed hard
with two monkeys’ worth
of her itching kisses

One thousand more
than he had accrued
in those thousand days
of running aways?

As his turned-on-heel
takes another’s embrace
which lifts him higher
as his suddenly-lover

No more counting
or care
of steps now rhymed
and left unnumbered

yo-yo

you you spoke far too soon
’bout your last sandman
’bout that last sandman
’bout your spare fuck man
you you spoke far too soon
’bout men and squirting sex
and bad sex in warm rooms
you you spoke far too soon
’bout a man ’bout your sandman
’bout your sniffed white lines
’bout men limp in your bedroom
you you drunk you you drunk
in a bar with a man not Oman
with a man whom you you knew
a first cousin on your account
first cousins count as last lovers
you you spoke after five hangups
you you answered five before were
five unanswered lies after lies after
you you gave it a week a week
post-valentines after your card
cards swapped rarely by you you
control-alt-delete you you soon

Working Girl

We briefly spoke –
it was a Monday
and you were out
in Central London
sounding slightly
drunk – three gins
gone and done
but not asked
about on your
next day return
Instead – it was
calmly stated
a week later –
you had taken
your lover again
We were shopping
for our youngest
in Haywards Heath
A bombshell
in M&S was not
your worst ever act

That Farmer’s Wife

Tess was never an unalloyed maid –
not Hardy’s vessel of pure emotion
untinctured by innocence

Such country girls are as scarce
as a hen’s brightly bared tooth
Too hastily judged? Or not?

She was metallic – below – to me
When bared – again – by a kindred
lover – our fusion rubbed to rust

Divisions of men – such she kept
mapped close enough to feel – to plot
and find her way – only her eyes shut

whilst her barn doors swung wide
to near-unhinged arcs of openings –
as her balm of blood – of love’s slaughter –

blew out on her cousin’s stunk breath
as he bent with her to snort at troughs
aligned by credit cards – then blocked

All a loss – it is no more a sweet place
Not for me – Sour scents off her wetness
turn on Etkin-Bell’s ring finger

All the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten
her odour as he wipes his creased brow
She dragged too many too close by lies

These Players

There are no long embraces –
no more slowing of time
by a hold on your intimacy –
or by those so-silent
acknowledgements
No unsaid understandings
by affection’s expressions –
none by a raised eye to mine

There are no looks in poor light
between slowly rolled reveals –
none from behind your kabuki’s drop
to show last acts and dull speeches
by your poor choice of leading man
to your bloodied hack of a queen –
an actress dressed by quickened lies
wearing arsenic in her makeup

Awakenings

In this year – so far – we have agreed
to annul our two-hander – your play

to not to be wed – to let go of – to lose –
to admit your need to be fulfiled by others

This you had inverted when it served your
reversal from vows and our long history

You morphed – not frigid – fearing your age –
of being your mother’s fat-arsed daughter

with her own cast of doubtful lodgers
and other blood-tied historical sniggers

You have dragged our experiments
and failed-at tests from our turned bed

out into the open – as your buried pain –
when your bared pain makes you come

I am now awake to such hard nudges –
ones once ignored – filed away for ages

The Elephant at Her Eightieth

I do not want a piece of cake –
Thank You

Your mother brought it back
from Great Aunty Sue’s wake –
or was it her birthday party –
from that family jamboree –

Except for you and me my boy –

at The Grand Hotel – Brighton
which featured an elephant
in The Ballroom

It was erect – so huge –
tight between their party pieces
and it stood on your mother’s foot

John rode it for his entertainment
as your mother stroked
its flaccid grey trunk

And Aunty Sue asked –
Why isn’t your lovely family here,
dear Niece?

There was no honest answer –
not with such a whopper
in the room