Boxing

Kick those voices
With a good steal
Boot sale in the back
Silver lining shrapnel
Picked up tat
Under the leather
Shredded endeavour
Maker’s mark on fine
Printed souls
War and tear
Names rubbed off
In the decade
Since I bought
The lock
They grumbled at night
I placed masking tape
To keep the words
From appearing on record
Overdubbed between licks
I’d forgotten they existed
Till I opened it by mistake
Now, they speak fluently
Darting across the room
Just out of harms reach
Like a cat, boxing
Ring manners
No punch thrown
Till the bell end
In the middle
Turns his back

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Boxing

Elegant

I’ve been given my injections
Jabbed in the arm
All the armoury I need
From a word floating
Through the air
Like an elegant dancer
Shape and form
Twirling through the gaps
Heat seeking missile
Dynamite on impact
But I’m standing tall
A diplomat of importance
Over-reaching my area
Straining to leech
Bloodsuckers in baths
It’s difficult to sleep
Without guards to halt
An airborne attack
The tiny dancer
Whistles in the wind
Carefully throttled
By a little voice
Whispering into my ear

Elegant

Spin

I get the feeling the ones
Who die young don’t deserve it
The wholesome ones
Loved, by all their fellows
Less lizard, more model citizen
Happy-go-lucky at altitude
Even as they cough
Deep red phlegm
The neighbours
Fight to breach
The edge of the ambulance
To ride in the backseat
Bottle a dying breath.
But us survivors are bitter
Self-indulgently grieving
Brandishing bouquets
Like magicians
Willing mortal punishment
An iron fist to get it over with
If there’s not a good word to say
Then I’ll sneer and disparage
Disgruntled, I’ll be,
Through every wheezing breath
No matter how many times
I hurl myself down the stairs
Some foolish medic
Stops the bleeding
Even when I chunter
They always continue
Before being knocked over
The next afternoon
Heart disease, apparently
Oh, isn’t it sad?
They died so young
Not a crease on fine linen
It all washes off
My holes filled with plaster
Made more of patches
Than the body I grew in
A sorry, wretched thing
Lest anybody speaks
With any positive spin

Spin

Panic

It’s common courtesy
When having a panic attack
To check everyone is fine to deal
With the aftermath
A quick heads up.
Disaster planning.
Alight here for self-destruction
And other harmful activities
It’s not that I’m anxious of
The tiny disruption I cause
It’s the cosmic insignificance
Being smaller than a quark
Still remembering to treat
Others with care
Even if it’s an empty gesture
From deep within the despair
It’s impossible to see
Beyond the empty space
Impulsive need to sabotage
The hapless animal in the cage
Darkness spreads through my pupils
Bleeding into the whites
Eyes that look infected
Vision losing sight
I feel nothing but the fear of death
Dragging me from this brief
Breath above the blackness
The act between two sleeps
Between something and nothing
Before the morphine eases pain
The dream of a hot, white light
Cools to blackness as it fades
For millennia the core spins
Till there’s nothing left
But a timeless return to the void
Space no longer bereft

Panic

Discs

I fell down today
Just a quick slip
Discs rotating off-kilter
Bent wrists halt
The southern excursion
Breath caught by
Concrete man
Floor wobbles
Like jellied physics
Large ladies warble
Ready to sing an
Operatic version
Of Julien Baker
Drink gasoline
It’s all we need
To keep the furnace
Roaring with heat
Hot discs rotate
Spring back into
Life, in the end
The burning smell
Asphyxiates the cells
Coughing for oxygen
They spread out of
Body, into an armchair
Pools of black liquid
Bubbling with relief

Discs

Indecision Maker

Indecision maker
No shaker or stirrer
Water, still pure

Bringer of silence
No offence or offense
Patient, not carer

Reader of packets
Food colouring vices
Oranges, wait for a hand

Incision delayer
The purveyor of mal
Contempt, with oneself

Frozen spectator
Creator of statues like
Being, gazing in fear

Preserver of stoics
No heroics in halting
Stateless, breathing ceases

A lost hour of time
No crime purged like the
Waster of watches

Divisive evasion
No ovation for standing
Alone, childlike

Blanker of passers
Advancers with words left
Cold, unanswered

Indecision maker
Unshaker of sails
Salt, leaking through pores

Indecision Maker

Come

They’re coming.
We don’t know when
But soon.
From where the sun sets
The town still clicks dimmer
Switches like falling dominoes
They’re coming.
My arm sore from scrawling
Fingers numb from typing
Printers dry from printing
Posters line the lampposts
Lock the doors,
Lock away your children
We search the edge of the horizon
Find nothing but a cold-climate
Driven to the desert front-line
Soldiers of electric violence
Selves humming in unison
Quiet motors, faint in odour
The sensors detect no advance
We await their arrival
Huddled in silence

Come