Poetry Blog by Tom (2016)

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You're My Man

O! Tell me again my teacher
hungrily, I listen to your story
ravenous, by candlelight 
call it out in a sooty street

Make your incisions with deep insight
the surgeon stillness of those deft hands
wisdoms draped in laurel leaves
infinite movement, sweet inertia

Shower me, my master
my naivety gladly surrenders
in the wake of your delivery
O Len, sing for me
some story I can dismant...

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heroleonard cohenteacher

I Will Literally Pay You To Abduct Me

entry picture

This evening I am out walking
the static crackles
in the living room
and in the hallway
I lace my shoes
and go out walking

Tree-shapes calm me
dew drops kicked from blades of grass
individually
this act cleanses things
I feel my fangs receding
sense the silence 
breathe back into me

Imagine the TV glow dimming
imagine the hatred in her eyes 
retreating
feel the black air cleari...

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alienscalmfightsrage

Such Strange Light

Such strange light
washing out
into the long night

Generous with pigment
volcanic reds and stella blues
you see that damp look
on the snapshot of my face

I wish someone had told me
wish someone had just shown me
dad, you could have warned me

O, how it burns
how it hurts to see yourself
suddenly, with that clarity
kept reserved for other people

In the rear-view mirror
in that...

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flashing blue lights

Farewell Serpentine

Circling the water
one final evening
I catch sight of my reflection
see those lines forming
writ across my brow
so I roll my head in ink
kiss the page…

Soon, we’ll be quietly leaving
no longer anchored in Zone Two
swaddled by the Thames
for an unknown pause we’re going now
The shapeless mess of time approaches
with me, desperately
clawing at relief lines
to understand what gradient
...

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goodbyeleavinglondonmoving on

At Dream's End

At dream’s end 
we let the water flow
accepting
resolved

At dream’s end
loosen our grip
hold the best bits
release the scenes that never came

I imagined house parties
some intangible heart that I would puncture
I imagined so much more
turns out it’s just another place 
moving at a heightened pace

Now I quietly sit by the chequered flag
grateful to have run
chest heaving
throa...

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dreamlifemoving

Goodnight Trellick

Riding the night train home
you fall asleep, head on my shoulder
I watch our reflection in the glass
watching our reflection
age
improve
converge
expand
as you sleep
on the night train home…

It’s a short walk on a summer evening
a short walk to our place
my arm around your shoulder
pulling you in close
I look up into the sky
deeply
drunken
grateful
expansive
but I see no stars...

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goodbyeleavinglondonmoving

Mind Tides

The chemical seas wash you closer
and closer again to me
Those chemical seas ride you closer
and then closer again to me, to me

O, how I’ve held a part of my collective breath
kept a little air inside for your return
part of me; poised patiently
as your waves wash through my closing fingers

O, how I’ve quietly tended a small flame for you
landing lights aglow along this heart's runway
...

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foollosspride

A Little Place I Know...

We all hate the government
but what can you do 
just drink in the evening sun
talking with old friends

A little place I know
when our graft is done
we go…

Cobbled streets, thin passageways
snaking pipes embrace the buildings
in the shadow cast by evening sun
standing with good friends

A little place I know
let’s grab a bus
and go…

Who voted 'leave', not one man here
I'll sta...

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citydrinkingfridaysfriendsLondonpast timespolitics

Ghosts On The Platform

As the rain falls in the early evening
treading the yellow line, solemnly waiting
a little drunk, a little lonely
all too aware of where I’m not going
haunted by the ghosts littering this platform…

As she draws him in so close to her
he dips his head to accept those smiling lips
begging, O!, they’re beating to be kissed
while phantom hands journey all across her body
curves pushed tight...

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longing

These Are Very Fine Memories

There’s a story I wanted to tell
I started it long ago
clutching pen in aching hand
the ink overlapping with the lines
I never really knew what I was doing
will you listen if I take some time to unfold
There are ribbons so long and tangled
some caught up in the gears of your story too
we rode so closely through the long grass
The rain sheeting down around us
small trees in the distance g...

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leaving town

Puzzles To Speak After You

Disappearing, out of view
always so smooth
always too soon
you make disappearing cool

When you slipped away
left puzzles to speak after you
let them say whatever’s needed
an exit so expertly executed

I wasn’t always a fan of you
such strange clothes
too out of time
so far removed from me
I didn’t know what you could say
that could ring true for me
I never thought there could be a...

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blackstargoodbyepuzzlessongs

Notes From Underground

The whole of life cowers in a shadow
as I sprawl undone on the leather sofa
those lingering promises blown apart
their bloodstained shards 
decorate my mind

O beauty, beauty
you'll be the death of me
I say nothing when I hear you speak
I hear nothing but my voice saying
'give yourself to me'

And you can choose not to remember
you can opt not to partake in recollecting
but the guilt...

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beautylustself

Storm Chasers

Tyre tracks on dirt roads
storm chasers
looking for the eye
or something on the other side

Peddle kisses the floor
world whips past the window
tearing up the old road
headed North, searching for more

We were happy here
(eventually)
but could there be greater happiness
elsewhere
storm is a chorus
always another verse 
on the other side…

In some mad way
we’re headed for a great...

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movingmoving citiesmoving housemoving on

A Love Experience

How patiently, how perfectly
with such finesse, you plan our passion
in such exacting detail
you’ve prepared our romance 
five years in advance

Spreadsheet every kiss
added lingering looks to your to-do list
flow-charted clothes torn off
a map showing where to lose ourselves
in the moment

O, but it’s still love 
or a version of it…
O, it’s still love 
or your version of it…

Did...

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loveplanningproposals

Bullet Holes In Backyards

Wound up
some nights
I go out to think…

Of all the truths we share
there are little reminders we choose to keep hidden
fix up the front porch

but bullet holes in backyards
they go on…

We may not know what they mean
but we know what they represent
the past is scarred, pock-marked

Did the children stand beside the pond
where they were sprayed and felled
did the family huddle clo...

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past

Beneath An Island Sky

Months, then years, flow in
like waves; they lap against our lives
washing ground up dreams along the shore
dreams of all we had to leave there 
upon the shelf
so much darkened distance now
drom certain past experiences
I so longingly need to draw on
O, how I pine
for a single drop 
of cob-webbed wisdom...

Day to day moments we share
they walk the blade-edge of pleasantness
I feel m...

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leaving

Lifted

You blew across the sky
a bird, black against the cloud
your wings beating hard
the way I was beating too

And for a moment…
I felt so alive

You slipped through
grazing my sooty skies
these pearly stars 
squealing in your wake

And for a moment…
I felt so alive

Was there something more
that we were supposed to do
some other experience
we should have expected to share

Lifted...

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unrequited love

Thrill of the Compass Spin

The fizz, the ghostly drag
invisible hands guiding these wanton bodies
I feel my compass spin
drawn in endless circles

Can I claim it as the artist’s curse
the love for new adventure
the pleasure of magnetic hearts
freshly spinning so close to us
whipping the iron filings of our creativity
into some explosive blur
a manifest black energy

But is it a curse at all
the thrill of the c...

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lostloveLust

Mont Blanc #1

Will you buy me that slick pen
so expensive, so beautiful

I wonder will you wrap it
in specially chosen paper

some coastal scene perhaps
engraved with my initials

a pretty choice of inks
will I unwrap it on my birthday, beaming

say ‘thanks so much’ and kiss you
then write hard of my betrayals?

 

(Jan 2016)

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writing

Singing Along To All Those Torch Songs

The voices of heartbreak 
they vibrate through the car
the voices of soul-ache
pour like water into this space

Next to that flawed, trembling voice
I lay my own
to that cracked and warbling voice
I add my own

That’s me
singing along
that’s me
singing along
to all those torch songs

The starkness of stripped, blunt words
fills the hollow part of all I see
the devastation of stri...

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longingSelf-awarenesssinging songs

Stranger on the Bridge

I’m a stranger on the bridge
above the sleeping city
a sea of lights below

I’m a stranger on the bridge
so far from friends all gone
those faces I’ve been sailing from

I’m a stranger on the bridge
passed by cars of families
slipping back to glowing homes

I’m a stranger on the bridge
a road between these worlds
fleeing fast from helplessness

I’m a stranger on the bridge
no fami...

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uncertainty

The Lighthouse

There are these nights
like clockwork I find myself
ticking up stone steps
at the lighthouse

There are these nights
cloaked in melancholy
staring out, wide-eyed
across the freezing seas of time

There are these nights
I sit, quietly, by the lens
wondering of all the other nights
I have sat quietly wondering…

A thread of light stretches backwards 
through all my life
sewing toget...

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memory

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