Donations are essential to keep Write Out Loud going    

Recent Comments

Is this Modern Love?

Is this Modern Love?

Find out.


Read and leave comments (0)

Modern LoveMax WallisPoetry

Modern Love by Max Wallis

This year I have a pamphlet of poetry coming out with the award winning press, Flipped Eye.  It's endorsed by the T. S. Elliot prizewinner, George Szirtes.

If you would like to sign up to receive more information about the pamphlet please visit this link:

Max Wallis

Read and leave comments (0)


On National Poetry Day Jo Bell tasked me to write a poem about being on a train and travelling from London to Manchester and *not* being able to go to poetry events.  I'd just done my first day at the Barbican and was commuting back home.  This is what came out.


Across England there are homes.
In pubs and streets and library waiting 
Places I could turn up, call my home

Read and leave comments (0)




If ...

if I close my eyes and cross my heart

... think hard enough.

If I blow the heads of dandelion fluffs:

          thinks of me

                  thinks me not.

Close my eyes and think hard enough


of alleys where we kissed and rubbed

places we still live in memory-touch.

If I turn the light switch forty two times

for every day we spent


Read and leave comments (4)

'When A Thief Kisses You, Count Your Teeth'

Take my coat and hang it by the door next to others.

Rip my shirt, button by popped button, tie it around your waist.

Pick up the little black things and put them in your pocket.

Undo my belt, wrench it until the loops split, curl it up.

Slide down skinclung trousers. Fumble with my feet and socks.

Cut off my boxers. Naked, take in my scent and shy eyes.

With a razor sha...

Read and leave comments (3)

Homo World

What if homosexuality was the norm, not hetero-? A straight's 'coming out': Homo World, 



Homo World

Heterosexuality was unheard of in our town
the thing of New York, London, Manchester’s Mecca
on TV, in pamphlets
relegated to short stories
and Vaseline-smeared-porn. 
Rock Stars and Pop Stars
not everyone. Not us. 
Not in our town. 


Read and leave comments (4)


Modern Love #1 - Texting

We send each other text messages at work.
Discuss what we’re having for lunch.
Ether-joined by 
unlimited messages and pixel screens.

Two minutes after saying goodbye on dates
our phones jangle, vibrate,
‘I had a lovely time tonight :)’.
The little xx means all the more from you.
You give me less than my mum
but it’s all the different.
I look and linger at them, there

Read and leave comments (3)


One for performing mainly, but I think it stands up alone.  Part of a series.


It’s Pokémon, pimples and boils.

Being a teenager—including the sores.
It’s Spiderman, Daredevil, Rudolph and GORE
the colour of darkness when your head hits the floor.

It’s nostalgia: 
ell-ee-dees and infra-red receptors on TVs.
It’s blame and physics watching stars burn
it’s the colour o...

Read and leave comments (6)



Sometimes, even now, 
I look at pictures of you. 

See what you’re doing, 
smile when you’re mentioned; 

I laugh at your jokes, in my head, 
even when I remember tears, too. 

All of this is bad, I know. 

To recall, 
just when love became memory.

Read and leave comments (0)



For the signatures on his body he thanked me
signed in saliva, scribbled in stick;
names covered every stamp of flesh.


Our love was sweetness, spring and sprung
two wholes sealed inside one heart:
strong as death, weak as life, we clung.


Then one day dawnsong mocked me
love became sour, shrill and slacking;
the emptying smile on a blank faced fool.

Read and leave comments (0)


I’m not sure when we began to be together
I mean, neither asked the other
it just sort of … happened
            like when you look out
in the evening and it’s morning, thinking:
Where did the night go?
I’m glad for it.  It’s better.
Two lifelines running together
merging, spilling, seamless
two trees growing
twined and intertwined.
What will our leaves loo...

Read and leave comments (3)

When the Wind Sighs - Video Recital

If anyone's interested in knowing who I am etc. here's a video recital.

Read and leave comments (6)


By the Colour of Death

By the colour of death I know him well
blue like the depth of winter; cold
as if in his eyes he captures that unforgiving light
of fluorescent bulbs, harsh above bodies in an autopsy room 
or swimming bath changing rooms
highlighting every dimple, dent, scar of a mark of your body. 

You see his paintings in those who mourn: 
a deep violet or mauve, verging on black. 
The sort...

Read and leave comments (0)

Linguistic Approaches to Love

Linguistic Approaches to Love

I could reminisce about the sibilance in your uncertain sounds
the fricatives of your ‘fucks’, the vowels in your moans.
Could dot-to-dot the consonants that construct your 
harsh-angry-hate and make of them a petal, bloomed.
Could take the condemnations, the indignations
and dissolve them into sheer potential o...

Read and leave comments (1)


I'm putting together a chapbook to start selling, as 1) I'm very poor and 2) I have so much work that I should probably start trying to get it out there.


Would anyone be interested?  We're looking at about 40 poems/pages.


Read and leave comments (2)

Our Duet


Together, in perfect measure
sinewed trees flailing, 

we were willows.

Out of love, in love, 
lip stained saliva scars
glowed in heat. 

Two, a duet
we sang our song. 

Hands pressed the keys
of your ribs, 
dragged down
slight bite of nail
we played 
an entire orchestra. 

Together, in perfect measure
we made a heroic couplet.

Read and leave comments (1)



You kiss me
button pants leave
hugged once
my tongue still tastes of yours.
Blue/red bus pulls up beside us
fifteen idle passengers in a metal demon
peeping out from behind their boredom.

It’s late.  

We breathe out fog, together.  Dragons.

Put my hand on your shoulder
lean in, smiling
exchange my heart
through my mouth.
Who could ever
be ashamed

Read and leave comments (2)

For As I Draw You

We christen every room with impressions
the curve of our backs, the stick of saliva dabbing our necks;
Da Vinci’s got nothing on the way we paint with our hands
the picture of love. (I didn’t just say that word.)
We exchange and engage in senses that don’t even exist, 
not just touch and taste, smell, feel, sight, but deeper than that. 

I know the angles of bisection that make yo...

Read and leave comments (2)

For Me

- this probably isn't in the collection, it's written to the parallel universe version of myself - the person who didn't write, who didn't invest the time and devotion into the craft and instead lived an arguably 'normal' teenage life-


I might seem like I have a hold on life

that my clothes look nice, that I act alright
back up straight looking great, that I’m no bait
for bein...

Read and leave comments (0)

For Hope

For Hope

[August, this is the fourth or fifth poem.  I wrote this in 2008 and edited it today/reworked it.]

I want kisses that mean something
hugs that tickle the inside skin 
I want dreams that come real the next day
memories that last and never fade.
I want songs written about me

be told that I can be, and be free.

I want late-night secrets and warm, 

Read and leave comments (0)

For An Emptying Smile


[March/April time in the series, after the characters break up.]

Under a fold of clouds
           you tear apart a part of me

hands unfold to show my heart.

Five words, five syllables,
the consonants the stuck out mocking tongue.
You’re still beautiful
when you destroy.

Smile empties into tarmac.
Collects in the gutter ...

Read and leave comments (0)

For This


[Set in August, after they meet in ‘For Fortune’ accidentally in the street.]

Mugged tea in your hand, 
coffee in mine I
brush my fingers through wet hair
rain-slacked and dripping.

Blush strokes across my cheeks.

I cannot help but look at you,
at your jaw, mouth, 
your eyes.
You sip, and when you sip
I imagine pressing my lips
against you, with you.

I w...

Read and leave comments (1)

For When the Wind Sighs + Audio

Everywhere I see you
                              feel you
this wine glass, your lips
the spittle-sip, your kiss. 

I can hear you breathing
when the wind sighs. 

When I turn off the lights
you are here, beside me
with your arms around my waist.
I cannot sleep.

Hands lingered on these bannisters
across pillows;
                    in the dawn
there splayed an ...

Read and leave comments (3)

For Fortune


We met again, in the rain this time
on bikes, in a road
with my tongue knotting, hands shaking, 
the bird in my mouth, fluttering— 
                                      my knees were weak
wobbled, toppled, 
                                      fell off to the pavement
the bike wrapped around me like an exhausted
          rain pooled in my clenched lids. 


Read and leave comments (4)

The For SeriesFor FortuneFortune

For You

I see your name in contrails in the sky
in the pattern of lines on my hands.

In friends eyes I see your eyes
glassed and sad.

I feel your lips in strangers lips
in gaps between utterances I can sense them. 

In the shadows of nolight I hear your footsteps
irregular and dancing.

I see your face in the branches of trees
in the gravel and dirt and leaves.

In words...

Read and leave comments (6)

for youm. r. wallisfortune

For Under a Vowel Sounded Sky (And a Poetry Collection)

I've almost finished writing the poetry collection. This needs refining but the introduction will be something along the lines of this:

'The following collection is one of love. Each poem can be read on its own but together they tell the story of a year long relationship between two lovers, through their lust, their heartache, their love and their turmoil. It is not my own tale.'


Read and leave comments (0)


Hooray! has breached the 5000 view barrier! someone get me a gin, please.  

Read and leave comments (0)

For Time’s a Thrifty Whore

Boxers round ankles, making murmurs I held you. Kissed you. 
A radiator clung to, I heated the bed. 
You grabbed my thighs. Eyes undressed me though I was bare. 
A smile upturned my mouth.
I memorised every angle, shadow of your face.
Washed my mind of everything except how you’re made. 
My finger followed the bones down and lingered there. 

Hand in hair you leant to me eyes cl...

Read and leave comments (2)

sexboxersmaxwallisfor time's a thrifty whorethe for series

For Ways To Not Fall In Love


I will not ask your name
in case it becomes my new lullaby
turned over and over again.


I will not kiss you first
in case pecked it remains with me
a silent signature of your lips.


I will not dance with you
in case the drink blurs your face into my dreams,
watching between Love and Like.


I will not tell you my hopes
in case...

Read and leave comments (6)

lovemaxwallispoetryfor ways to not fall in lovethe for series

For My Unloved


For My Unloved


I will not write you a poem, for it is likely that you do not read.


I will not perform a song for you, for I cannot sing

or bring myself to learn these things.

my voice is that of a washing machine gurgling.


Let it be known!


I will not crush the stars into lanterns to light your darkness

don’t be stupid.

Nor will I mak...

Read and leave comments (6)

unlovedlovedforthe for seriesmaxwallism.r. wallis

For the Notion of Emotion of Three in a Bed

For the Notion of Emotion of Three in a Bed

Audio: click here

‘Who’s to lose when there are three in a bed?’ they said; ‘sheets a mess,

two plus you, who can fail with that much male! six hands, three cocks

doesn’t that make a better fuck?’

I guess—perhaps maybe possibly but isn’t one gonna be the guy

who has to sit aside and watch instead? out of the...

Read and leave comments (1)

maxaside not insidethreesomewallis

For Help


The For Series

For  Help


open, sore

unwelcome untended

shackled, chain, body maimed,

unmendable labels gained


enamoured, hammered,

paranoid, no android:





illogical, fleeting, hearts-weeping,

gleaming dreaming




To think of this

to think of this

to think




Read and leave comments (5)

The For SeriesMaxWallisFor Help

For Dicks

For Dicks

There are so many people with their dicks out on the net

I don’t want to watch a man wank off on Chatroulette

or see you sell your wares on interweb gaylairs, cock out

arse up, backwards lean, angles gleam’d to make you look

good.  No, thanks, I will not ‘post my cock pix pls’.


At least in a way there’s dignity in porn you see

for some might say at...

Read and leave comments (5)


This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

Find out more Hide this message