Wednesday 30 December 2009

Everybody loves a montage.

Some yuletide crafting I've been numbing my fingers on. Hope you've all had marvellously festive festives, and happy new year!

Monday 14 December 2009

I have not stopped making.

But I cannot share any of it on here yet. I have been having a lovely time, though my back is aching quite a bit, and I have a numb patch on my right ring finger from knitting.

Wednesday 2 December 2009

Preparation is key.

So I have had busy fingers!

Bought some stuff last night... quite a lot of stuff, online. It felt good.

So today I went and bought some more stuff on my lunch break. That felt pretty good too, especially as it meant I got to spend time in an art shop. It smells so good in those places. SO good.

I have been skills-swapping this evening, though I am still owed some instruction from Stacy. I have also been having my way with some colours. Really good colours.

I think this is probably cryptic enough.

Time is a multi-winged beastie with a tricksy air about her.

Next weekend I'm going to see I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue being recorded in Scarborough!

Monday 23 November 2009

It's all in a name.

This is just a quick exercise poem. I've been trying to keep my hand in but it's getting increasingly difficult to find time for writing around knitting, crocheting, card-making and various other time-swallowing activities which go hand-in-hand with the Christmas approach. The nature of these crafticles also means I won't be able to post pictures, in case the recipients get any ideas. Perhaps I will leave some cryptic posts, like, um: today I have been folding the wrong parts of flowers and making berets for foodstuffs out of thready fluff. Hm.

Anyway, here's the poem. Go easy on it. It's as new as a new thing that's still got water in its ears from the birthing pool.

She is known by her name and so becomes it.

Her skin will blister with the suddenness,
her clothes bleach white then grub up with graft,
her surroundings dry to desert in the oven heat.

The next morning she wakes it will be virtually night
and the afternoon time to lay her head
on wheat-sack bedding, flour on her nose.

Dough will settle in her knuckles, her upper-arms
toughen for kneading.  The flesh she has left
will rise and crack soft like a batch loaf roasting.

[EDIT - I decided very strongly against the last stanza, and so deleted it. Please forget it existed. Thank you.]

Friday 6 November 2009

Pop! Whizzzzz!

I took a few, here are some. Oos and Aas abound.


Wednesday 4 November 2009


My Hallowe'en costume was homemade, so counts as creativity. This means I have something to post! Hoorah!

Perhaps brought on by my assumed character, I have joined the ranks of the birds at Twitter. @sophiefbaker. I am against the idea of hyperconnectivity, so will endeavour to avoid talking about anyting too banal. I will also make sure nobody ever feels like they know what's going on in my life on a moment-to-moment basis. There might be some poetry. Very short poetry.

As you can probably tell, I am slightly disappointed in myself for caving. I still had a little thrill when Jon Ronson @replied to me, however, regarding bloody goat meat...

Sunday 25 October 2009

Take some time out. Have a moment. Here's some to model yours on:



Three swans flew over this city and it did not seem strange
to stop and stare, their necks lined up with the bridge,
their heads travelling a steady line. I cannot explain what juxtaposition,
the sky’s exact colour is a mystery in recollection.
It only makes sense in relation to pauses. Three
white pauses, and a smile I might struggle to explain
but when it comes to it, enjoy.


No crackle of radio silence, or the muffled movement
of a microphone out of visual context. But I have stopped,
there is time to fix my eyes on the radio alarm, my mind empty
of relatable experience for the gaps in air, the drifting silence
after Sailing By. No drama, no pips, no nuclear explosion.

    And then a chap, unhurried, a
technical glitch, a wry smile in his voice. The World Service. Sleep.


My hand on your thigh, your mother
an unfair mechanical cackle down the telephone line.
Your own voice changes into a depiction of what you’d become—
your father—if it wasn’t for nights like this: us, entwined. Me
staring at the paused screen; a woman’s breast mid-fling, her nipple blurred.

Saturday 24 October 2009

Durham Book Fête

So I have just returned from a day knitting at a book festival. I can't really think of a better combination of activities, except it didn't involve any writing. I did, however, swap some clothes for a skirt, and some books for another book, so I reckon I came out on top regardless.

The theme of the day was knitting from recycled materials, namely plastic bags. It sort of turned into an advert for Sainsbury's as those were the predominant supply of bags, but the orange, I think, sets off Wendy's eyes quite marvellously.

I was knitting a book bag, but then the day was drawing to a close and I had been a little ambitious with the size, so I turned it into a hat. Good job I did! Turns out Wendy liked it enough to take it home and off my hands! I did get some pictures first though.

Friday 23 October 2009


..and welcome to my new blog. No rules at all on this one, and no limit of a year! I think that's where I was going wrong. Either way, I've imported the stuff from Catalogue Twentysix and hopefully will be more inspired to update regularly now it's called something I can relate to more. Just--some stuff. Sounds easy enough! Wish me luck!

Sunday 11 October 2009

Proof. And an incurable knitting fever.

I have been being creative, though it hasn't involved much poetry. Maybe I am exploring knitting as a sort of poetry with objects. Very long, thin and flexible objects.

Wednesday 7 October 2009

One in a month

is an unacceptable situation to have gotten myself into. Shucks.

I have learned to knit. I have been poorly. I miss swimming. My lungs still hurt if I cycle uphill in the chill nearly-winter wind.

A new poem, unrelated:

Spurn Head

The whip of dune grasses and cuts on the soles of my feet.
It alters, chances the river that feeds it. I race
to the tops and bottoms of dunes that no longer exist.

It is downwards that haunts me, giant slow-beat strides
in the shifting sand. My legs are salt-numbed and hefty; load-bearing
and practical, covered to the knee with every step.

I don’t remember the disappointment, the slowing down,
but lose myself in the towering impermanence
risen from the shining dark. Salt in my hair, cool sand between my toes.

I will return with you to this end of the end of the road
and lie myself down, my hair in my mouth and then your mouth there
with the wind whipping dune grass on us from the folding sands.

I will not tell you that there is permanence in its alteration,
that this is all I have dreamed of whether you are here or not:
that you could be anyone with sour-breath kisses in the dark.

Saturday 19 September 2009

Something new! Callooh! Callay!

Job’s worth

Occasional birds flash across the sterile white-out sky
and snap my eyes across the high-set windows.
This room is monotony too: rows of labelled content
and blank goggles reflecting strip-light white.
A clatter, and some sudden words—nothing we can look back on
from outside time. My memories are like the distant windows:
so far above the day-to-day that they seem experimental, avant-garde.
I remember days like these flayed bodies in exacting standards of sterility.
I am stripped back to colour and unapologetic.
I had thought perhaps I wanted the change of discovery,
but find myself missing the comfort of endless scrutiny.
There are no right-angles I can lean on now,
only dreams of white-walled rooms and so many little pieces
of thought, gathered in a bleak and chemical silence.

Sunday 16 August 2009

Another one I found that I'd forgotten..

The Inherited

Generations have died before they've had a chance
to tell me how I'll go. One sudden death after another.
How do I prepare? Perhaps they are themselves
the indication and I'll just go like they did: in the morning
unable to sit up for fear of pooling blood; in hospital,
a pink swab mopping saliva from sunken parts of face;
eight weeks from diagnosis.

I could carry round whole heaps of hows to stop it, but slings
and plasters are no prevention. Every pain I have could be
where things will loosen first, every limp and yawn
a last hurrah, a sign of things to come.

I am not calm, but my oblivious heart is tapping out the truth
on my love-torn ribs: b-bum, b-bum, b-bum—
I think hear correctly: all is well yet, all is well.

Tuesday 11 August 2009

I just found this on my computer at work.

The blue and yellow roller-boots handed down to me from the 70s

I was in mid-air when I noticed the blackbird nest:
I soon felt the snap of flightlessness in my coccyx.

The cats would wait here at the bottom every summer,
tasting imaginary bones, re-enacting the catch

while the parents bred and fed like crazy
their fat, stranded children.

Wednesday 5 August 2009

It's been a little while.

And in that time I have been on holiday. Also, a moth came to visit me that was as big as my palm. I'm not sure where it's gone now, but hopefully out and toward the real moon, wherever that leads, as my big broken paper lantern (as it just learned) is not the same thing and leads only to trouble. And a headache.

And so for a photo, first, and then maybe a poem later.

Thursday 23 July 2009

My hips are sore.

I have no cure, only stretching. And I have no particular reason except over-use. And I have no way to avoid over-use that doesn't involve sitting down for long, boring, periods of time. And I hope they feel better in the morning without me having to do anything about it.

And now, a poem.

This is the story of an urbanite

or so you say in that way you have
when it gets to that point in wine-consumption
that ignites a passion for the centre-stage.
Under the soft-focus light of an audience

I am nothing but polite.
You turn your gaze towards me,
indicate an appetite for a tale
revealing nothing but a crucial oversight. But we are not there yet.

The streetlights still orange the windows
and you have given nothing of me away.
I smile, wait
for the rest of the story to latch onto me like a parasite,

close my eyes. This is the story
of an urbanite,
you start again, and her search
for a way to begin.

Thursday 16 July 2009

Science. Poetry.

I am not necessarily pleased with how my brain keeps these seemingly disparate subjects in different segments of itself that prefer to be cordoned off and virtually unaware of each other. I'm trying to get one side waving. I'm not sure which side has the longest arms.

Stem Cell Therapy Symposium, I

Trickery. Trickery and fiddling.
This is, we are told, the only way to heal the heart.

My heart overhears and it does not like this fact,
quotes back some facts that seem to offer counter-argument.

I tell it that its research is out of date, that it’s alone,
but console it with lies and emotion, hold it steady

from its fluttering. Do not falter, I tell it, just because of this.
And anyway, I say, breaking is a state of mind. Mostly.

Friday 10 July 2009

I have been re-writing toads. So here it is again.

It's probably not that different now I think about it, but it's closer to how it was supposed to be when I got it down the first time.


At the thought of each toad, a shudder, and I
have my ears covered as the car pulls off.

My dad and I pick our way for the last three hundred metres
in the pitchest night through the slap-slap

of toad bellies on concrete. There is a flash of carcasses
with every sweep of torch, so it's turned off

and we are straining our eyes with our heads bent low,
afraid for our own weight on soft bodies.

The black closes in, so much so that it’s hard to imagine
a receding fear amidst the croaking and my hand

in my Dad’s hand. The search for the ground is pointless so
I close my eyes against the nature of the dark.

I'm really quite sad about not being able to see foliage any more.

I don't remember being consulted. And now I won't know which skirt to wear because there's nothing I can see that will indicate how windy it is in the morning.

In memory of the only tree I could see from my bedroom window.

Forgive me, but I am thinking of you again.
They were chopping down the tree in your old front garden
when I woke up this morning. The unknown bird
I hear sometimes will have no place to hide and sing.

I Googled you today; your online presence only lists
you at your old address, your other name that rare occurence
of ‘no results’ – you are lost. I watched the tree come down
in pieces and exclaimed to you, though I have no reason

to believe you care for birds. I will try just your first name,
maybe, and see where in the world you have flown.
I used to treasure my space in your life, the one last connection
to the past. But I understand, this is what makes me unknowable now.

The tree is gone and I am home, the bird unsteady somewhere and in flight.
If only I could put it back, crack trunk and green from air.
As it is, I am only waiting to happen across you – perhaps
face to face in some tree-lined avenue we don’t consider home.

Wednesday 8 July 2009

..and another.


I am underdog despite my 43 lengths
so far this morning and it seems my age
is holding me back. I cannot keep a straight line to myself

and no allowances are made for any mis-timing.
The only place I am alone is when I brave the front-crawler
whose arms boom at different pitches to each other

with every steady stroke. His journey is the bass-line of our orchestra,
straight and uncomfortable. The beats pound my heart
and I earn my first looks of acknowledgement

though it is hard to catch them with eyes
stinging from the backsplash.

Ok, so it's been longer.. but I've been writing new ones!


At the thought of each toad, a shudder, and I
have my ears covered as the car pulls off.

My dad and I pick our way, for fun,
in the pitchest night through the slap-slap

of toad bellies on concrete, their high-pitched
rumbles. I don’t picture a torch,

but I do remember the flash of carcass
in the passing of our own car ahead. The black

closed in, so much that it’s hard to imagine
the receding fear amidst the croaking and my hand

in my Dad’s hand and yes, I remember now,
my eyes closed against the nature of the dark.

Sunday 28 June 2009

That gap was too large, yes indeed. Won't happen again!

In the morning

I remember sneaking in at 5am
and hours on my feet replayed through my soles
with every beat of aching blood.

I remember how you slipped, gentle from sleep
and rubbed the life away back into them
with cooling hands, perched

at the end of the bed. My secret tears
faded to sleep except for the crystals

now I wake. And my feet, oh my feet,
on pillows; your head on the bed.

Thursday 18 June 2009

Let me know what you think of this one, if you're reading...

Be honest now!

At the sink, with La Traviata on the radio

The ink suspended mid-thought, dried
in the trappings of nib and well, succumbs

to gentle swooshing in hand-warm water
where she bathed me once too, small as I was then.

She stands for this uncommon ritual.
It will take as long as opera for the colours to loosen,

for the sink to deepen to lichen green or summer blue.
Only the red stains her wrinkling palms

as the stubborn brown gives way to her patient hands rocking
back and forth in a humming of arias.

Monday 15 June 2009

A week's gone by so quickly, and this one is fast slipping too.

Resting your eyes

There was something about the way you were sitting,
startled, which made me ask. You told me your eyes
were closed as a sort of compromise
for the time its possible to waste in front of the TV,

wearing your eyes out needlessly, shortening their life.
I didn't ask, then, any more of your explanation
but often wonder if it works for other things.
Sometimes I stop myself from seeing you at all

in case what we have runs out. Other times I catch you
blinking back the sight of characters who've aged unrecognisably.

Mostly, though, I watch your closed-eyes vigil with my own eyes
open, wearing them out on you and your quiet, secret, snoozing.

Monday 8 June 2009

A new one. And a nightmare in html.


A polar bear pushes off with its left back foot
its fur a waving forest in the flow. It stands up,
shakes the wet from its ears,    walks back.

A pygmy marmoset is frightened
by the size of our faces; tries to feed while we peer
at its exquisite flash of tongue; plays hide and
hide with a quizzical look we treasure for days.

An oilslick raven buries twigs under dinosaur feet,
its beak a delicate tool in sand. The sun is out. Tapirs
surprise us with their heft on straw. The polar bear

   pushes off with its left back foot, its fur a waving forest in the flow.
It stands up, shakes the wet from its ears,     walks back.

A leopard looks straight at me through glass,
rubs its fur against the window pacing paw-shaped grooves
we do not notice for the speed at which it moves.

A raven, oilslick black against the sky, perches
watching twigs disappearing under sand.

             River hog bristles are still
                                           in hot air.

The polar bear pushes off with
its left back foot, its fur a waving forest
        in the flow                                              It stands up, shakes
the wet from its ears,
                                walks back.

Sunday 31 May 2009

Welcome back to the Black Clock Arms; every pub you've ever avoided.

The Black Clock Arms

IV. Babs

She knows she's only there as the inevitable
namesake but revels in attention lavished

on her by rough old queens. It's all natural,
rings sharp through karaoke notes.

She flashes her puce nails; works there
on the basis that she only pulls pints;

is wary of newcomers, who see through rouge
with clarity not befitting dim strip-lighting; prefers

the company of regular strangers, who don't see
her face, but never fail to compliment her nails.

The Black Clock Arms

III. Geoff

Geoff's shined velvet seat, black with polished dirt,
cools in the almost-night Black Clock Arms.
He'd lost touch with the flesh of himself until it started to brown.

He sits several feet from the people he recognises
but can't place the names of out here; their stories fade
in the light. His pint and his arse reach a unison of temperature:

one warming on the bar, the other cooling on a bollard,
while he realises how little he cares about the barstool
now the only place to chain smoke is here.

The only thing missing is a place for the smaller papers, spread
open and every sentence read and repeated over again
to kill the time he has more of, now, to himself.

Monday 25 May 2009

I shall be starting yoga again very soon, so this is apt.

To be still.

Grandstanding with my knees on my elbows
and in one of my favourite outfits—a skirt
I bought two of, a black cardigan—
I am at tipping point when I come to the realisation

that it's not about strength, but balance. And here, now,
I feel a little silly for the times I've almost toppled,
straining in almost-position wearing jogging bottoms
and a Pennywise t-shirt, waiting for the muscles in my arms.

Weightlessness, like someone said, occurs
firstly in your toes. The only thing that stops me
breaking my nose is knitwear
friction on the backs of my arms.

Sunday 17 May 2009


Waiting at Northside for you

There is only one red sofa and anyway it has the best view
of the green three-breasted women I can find. Every time
I've been here a man with a balding head has chosen 'luck' over 'love'
and would have 'sex' if only the option was displayed on the wall.

There is a buzzing in the absence of scream, and an awful lot of
blood, concealed and sanitised amidst the cartoon colours
of juicy hearts struck through; and a language of needles:
the backpieces, half-sleeves and cover-ups—the freehand fee.

A pregnant woman hums a tune either side of the mechanical whine
when the sudden burst door shouts a social conscience
Don't do it! There is a ripple of laughter but it is too late for you,
who emerges beaming and bleeding and ready for home.

Friday 15 May 2009

It's nice to be able to post more than once a day

Birthday Sessions tracks 5-18

Only that it seemed the right thing at the time,
to keep pressing record, to tempt out tunes
you only appreciated as halves in a fishpond memory
you had willingly drained, to wait the several phrases
before your fingers found their feet, to push,
to remember myself a childhood spent bouncing
on your foot under the pretence of making you stop.

But listening back, the tracks are mostly talking
and the beginnings are missing. And the tinny tunes
don’t convey the mythology of it, the smiling
recollection of it, the fairy lights and dark curtains
that turned everything cosy, the journey
we were all taking with you, the absences
that have since come clear.

I've been reading an awful lot of Donaghy.

after Michael Donaghy

They have long since lost the air of delicacy
you expect, but it is a common condition, the longing.
I too am convinced there is a word for them missing,
erased neatly except for the gap, but they are not metaphors.

They do not house importance in their swirling plastic storms;
remember how we stood that time with our most sarcastic voices
praising the value for money, the ‘igh quality purchases
we were mad to walk away from? It is just another way

of summing up a place for all the reasons you don’t recognise
in landmarks. Maybe we do hold them high above our heads,
but it is not carefully. In the same way we never visit
our hometown’s icons, they are long since plastic.

Wednesday 13 May 2009

Cells speak.

Riding Out

We did not hear God’s words. If God spoke
it was not on a cellular level, but we ride out
with the rest of them on those intentions.

It starts here, we perform. A chemical reaction,
divide and replace. No words. Only ever
the endless balance, the timeless demands.

Forwards is not just on through the horse’s mane
and ahead into fields, but onwards into time as well.
We can see a lack of hope despite the hope

of thousands. We know this will not end well.
When does it ever end well? Function is repetitive
and not exact; we lose sight of the perfection

with every repeat. The future would do well
to take note, but we have no sway in the decisions.
You say we are remembered, but what is memory when God is involved?

A very new one, still fresh.

The Point

We’ll begin this time with the atmosphere—I am too tired
to consider the vastness beyond, though you do seem to be pointing
upward, outward, towards existence itself. But you say no,
you are not pointing at that. I bring the focus closer and clouds come clear—
I see ducks and the obligatory ice-cream cone. But no, you say, not that
not that
. The tree, I think, and I begin to try to figure out which leaf
it is you’re asking for – because it is an ask, it seems to me, though not
a big one. What would I want with a leaf? you say. What interest would I have
in that?
I am struggling, seek the answers in tricks of circumstance.
The window, perhaps, the glass. The very thing I am taking for granted. No.
Your finger, then, the nail upon it. I set up my own laugh as I search your face.
Is it that?. Your head is shaking, side to side to side, your eyes are sad
with decline. I am firmly in the room, the walls are puce, the smell a distraction
from the truth of it. My laugh is still waiting. It must be, then, the cells of you.
The failing, flailing cells of you, dividing, slowly slower. Your hand, still pointing,
wavers. Your heart beats on. Take care of the pieces, you say, look to the future.
I follow your point backwards up your arm and on to your stubbled face.
Why is it the future is always away, up and out?

Tuesday 12 May 2009

Dancing, photographs.


Out from under the lights everyone is
peach-coloured, a normal combination
of skin tones. It's hard to know from this,

sometimes, which moments to acknowledge
as real, but documentation is an inevitability
in these digital times.

I might be mid-air in that picture
you took, but that doesn't mean
I never landed.

Tuesday 5 May 2009

Something and nothing. Probably not much.

from music #3

We’ve gone down low again, but this time with theatrics.
There is manipulation in chord progression, aspects
of sound that are not agreeable to the dizzying heights of relief.
We are not in it for relief, but revel with the worms
and the darkness, the filth shifting into subversion from embrace.

Dear cells of mine, dear body, is this how it’s meant to be?
Somewhere wholly imaginable in the muck, sharing
lack of surprise that there are voices speaking to us from the dark?
This must be the answer because there is nothing else.
How easy it is to turn from the sky. How clear its incomplete deceit.

The reply is not un-looked-for, but it doesn’t come as echo
from above. We live with it or feign surprise. We aim for the dark
because we want to be much as we started: microscopic
in proportion to importance; unable
to pull ourselves together in time to answer back.

Monday 4 May 2009

Some other poem about a distant place.


Everything solid here is on its way out.
If you believe that, you'll see this picture I took
of decaying arches as a recent history of waves
that rust fat nails clean from wood.

Beyond the inky black of seaweed creeping down the walls;
beyond the sea-fret sky you watch in rockpools long-since clean
of crabs, the walls are distinctly graffiti free.
The green of the rocks is a signal of how fast you could fall;

the length of time I sat and watched the fizzing sea weighted
with the penny slot-machines that tinkled like a distant fairground ride.
Even the Vitadome is grinning as it is slowly picked apart,
one facelift too far beyond collapse.

Another revision

They’re hardly touching

It's only after the carefully timed removal
of his coat that they appear to feel at home.
He gets up, abandons the perfect shape
of his arse in mounds of coat piled on the seat
and a woman with a blonde bob fingers the corner
where the zip is with a nervous purpose.

It's taken a whole spritzer each to reach this point
of layer removal, to the revelation
of his pink-striped top cut off at the sleeves
and an overwhelming smell of fabric conditioner.

The woman has clearly done everything
to rid his scent from his public self.
At home, though, in quiet moments on wash day
I reckon she lifts his worn shirts by the sleeves
and sucks deep breaths through the weave,
her nose in the armpits, savouring the intimacy
of every last molecule of sweat.

Sunday 3 May 2009

Something new for me and for you.

Letter to a troublesome heart

Dear heart, please do not betray me
whilst I breathe with others in this room.
Please do not presume dominance
over the needs of my other organs. You do not
dictate my actions. I am going to try and take
good care of you, carry you more gently
than strictly necessary. I am not averse
to your slippery beating in my hands. Do not be alarmed
at the hole in my chest – I am cutting all your ties
to my emotions. It is for the best. I feel
there is a lot we can learn from one another
as separate. Please calm down. The pressure,
I know, is getting to us both.

Still it seems you deign to tell me how it is
these days are unsteady and unknowing.
I do not want to hear it but cannot block you out.
How easy it is for you, unfeeling and inevitable;
rhythmic and relied upon. There is blood
on my shoes but even that is not enough to distract.
I don’t know, any more, what I have to offer but
dear heart, surely there is something,
an arrangement we can come to?

Sunday 26 April 2009

A revision.

The Gifts

Here, for you, a long slow sky at first;
feel it open you up like water to thirst.
Bring this morning to your snow-dead toes,
to each body part a meditation in coming to terms.

Take next a sliding acceptance of horseback,
feel the horse's own gait through your spine and relax.
It is my gift to you: use it as a distraction,
perhaps, from anything else, from preoccupation

with the facts. You've shut your eyes by now,
I can tell. Feel my fingers up your spine.
I'll count the hairs I've raised there one by one
whilst you escape the panic of a striptease

of feelings straight to bone. Stay with me, I still
have a few things to offer. Ignore the voices
out of reach through the white noise; don't fish it

for the one you think you know. Let me shiver you
out of dreaming alone. There, you can speak now.
It’s so good to see you. There's a lingering smell

of pine-damp picnics whenever you're ready.
Eat until you're full; don't stop until your cheeks
match the colour of a shepherd's delight.

Sunday 19 April 2009

Been busy today!

Extended metaphor for a washing machine

My thoughts are tired of churning
churning and my nerves are sick of being soap.
My only softener is hope and there is not enough of that

only turning and the inevitable spin.
So I’m ready for more spinning and spinning
and no way to stop it, to open the door

without something spilling out. The noise
is sleep-unbearable so I hope I don’t disturb.
It follows me to bed, and everywhere the judder.

A bird, too quiet, in a holly bush

I chased the thought of save it into the holly bush
and, bare-armed, pulled out a bird too willing to be well.
Triumphant I held it close, my palm covering its eyes
from freedom and it was still. I stumbled home
with its delicate heart beating fast under my thumb,
boxed it with holes punched for air and sat for minutes
in the dark, the box between my feet.
I told no-one for fear of the right thing to do,
and named the bird over and over; a mantra
as desire for its affections, as recognition of a deed well done.
The next day its hunger was palpable through its thin
cardboard walls, though it never sought to let on.
I took the box outside and whispered its name again,
once with every step and the lifting of the lid. The bird
blinked at the sky and went to it. I called its name
to the wind, but only got the wind back. It took days
for the cuts on my arms to disappear.

Saturday 18 April 2009

Salsa Workshop Poem

The truth of it

The monumental blue clouds sit heavy on our horizon,
but I am trying to tell a story of the inside, here,
though there’s something to be said for the looming.

It all comes down to your monumental I don’t know,
drama lent to it from the blue-cloud sky I stared at
to avoid your eyes. Or perhaps it was you
who avoided mine – who said outside, look,

the monumental blue clouds are filling the night

and me who agreed, who held on to it, who is here now
waiting for this I don’t know to happen amidst all the other unknowns
we wait for and prepare. I clamber out, slip between
the blue damp and home; a resolution, of sorts,
and your heavy I don’t know obsession in my pocket.

Monday 13 April 2009

Hello and welcome!

Well, here we are. A new blog and some new ideas, and a whole new year to play with.

I'm not entirely sure what to do with this one yet, but whatever happens there will be poems, so please check back soon to read them.