Calliope

I want to receive you like the bed after becoming so tired I cannot sleep and odd things run through my feverish mind

I want to sit stunned cross legged on the covers and reach over to catalogue you mindlessly at first, but then knit all of you together with my tongue

I want to hear your voice collapse like, in the grey fog, immense waves in a storm collapse on chalk cliffs, I want to collapse

I want your gaze to become decentred from the locus of your self, allow the sun to become everything of you, scattered over you on the forest slopes in the snow

I want you to think of all of your best lovers whilst we recall them by knotting together, and it becomes hard to untangle from the past to go make coffee

I want us to forget each of us which gender we are, at the moment of climax when all there are are damp surfaces and depths and the universe achieves its end smiling, I want us to sweat

I want you to feel your dark hair rise all over your body, feel it grasp everything like snakes as I become statuesque

I want it to be like tearing the book of your life in half from that moment each time, each time you look at me and laugh or sigh and the rain pelts jealously on the window

I often think of collapsing with you on the floor as soon as we cross the threshold, with a little ceremony and incense, the censer swaying back and forth over the carpet. I often think of you

V.72

Being in love with you is like
wrongly putting the recycling
in the black bin, but liking it.
And the rubbish in the green bin,

but liking it. Being in love
with you is like getting my ears
syringed, and I can hear a range
of high and annoying tones I lack

at any other time, but it’s great.
It is knowing that any mar
of my ears is now down to meat
asymmetry, rather than wax –

you reveal my material
defaults, simply by existing.
Being in love with you is like
accepting the judges’ avis

despite knowing that taste and all
aesthetic sensation is based
on subjective judgements, grinding
my teeth to get out that word ‘good’,

sitting in the cold waiting room
on the almost unused sofas
shivering with nerves, until I
hear your voice call out ‘we’re ready’

V.68

On the cross he began to mouth
and the women leant closer in
“blood, blood,” he whispered and then out
of his side poured clear. Wondering…

The lord wants us to suffer more
so he may suffer more and for
that be blessed by himself, taking
it upon himself. God is a vampire

God is a masochist. Lying in the bed,
God calls her darling, looks into his chest
cavity where his heart lies still and riven
Darling, he says, I care about you.

Now reach in there and squeeze. God loves
every part of you, all your neat quirks
but mostly your soft blood. Because
he made you. He wants to suffer

more so he makes you sin, to feel
the glory of taking you in.
But the greater unknowing cloud
of blood that bore him, is more cruel.

She said I long for you, my god,
as you long for blood. Drink of me
so I may suffer as you do.
Her neck was pierced. The light shone through

V.53

A great book is an arsonist
that sets fire to the field of you.
Flames lick across, and slow or fast
you change. A great book is a crack

in glass, that hit just right will break,
creating a pile of shards that
rest on the pavement and inspire
this thought that something once held here.

A great book is poison, stopping
the normal functioning of the
organism. A great book is
a tear in the fabric of normal

time. Or shampoo in life’s wide eye.
A great book takes the jigsaw’s last
piece and eats it as you watch. Damn.
A great book is like an error

in printing where the whole thing starts
again when you’ve just reached halfway.
A great book can be an error.
A great book is a burst lightbulb

in a dark hall, making you cold
and nervous. A great book is a
bag that splits, scattering your stuff.
A great book is a sprained ankle

V.18

Silence as silent as rainfall
in the mid-atlantic on fire –
open up on puddles of oil
paint from a sinking container –

then see the faint rain start. Silent
as you, floating ten feet deeper
silence as the waves wash over
determined by ancient causes

of death, of life, of everything
else as you look up through the film
of skin on your face to see bright
young fish darting into the fire

between gulping breaths of water.
Silence as silent as cut rope
sinking into the depth of sea
beneath you, perhaps the last thing.

Silence as loud as thunder’s roll
which rolls on and on and never
falls to earth but holds the soft birds
in dark suspense on the ship wires,

drawn from this satellite footage
of the earth at night, on your phone
as you lie hearing nothing roar
louder each second each second

Three Sketches

I –

A calcinated cliff towers over the wood
riddled with caverns and within those
caverns, we find more caverns, the walls
are made of caverns and the floors
well, little difference there with an abyss
if I’m honest. The clouds dragging
themselves over the earth set up
a tone, with a little liquid and a vibration
which gets the lightwaves shivering
and humming, with all the depth of oceans
and it blasts through into the very skeleton
of the plateau, into the brain of the earth –
blasts it right up until the moment when
it almost shivers apart. Then waterfalls
fall, crash down along the paths of thought
filling it all up slowly with a mercurial
liquid, the liquid of worth. It brims
brims with all of value, even the chasms
blackness seems somehow fuller.
And that’s music

II –

We watch as it happens;
the glint descends, glistening.
It flutters and curls before landing
with a flitter just beyond hearing
around her eyes, nesting in wrinkles
burrowing deeper, I soon see it looking
out at me, and we smile. And I know
from now on, what she wants of me

III –

Still night, dark night, night
to tempt the stars to a long flight
or to give it up and fall, crash
to earth or ocean, falcon fast
fitting snugly into the mineral
dance and swirl of all nocturnal
dust, but the air is still and thick –
It waits, quietly, rainless in
the fug that stillens everything