Sunday Poems VIII

Last night was Latitude 53’s annual The Fine Art of Schmoozy Fundraiser — just Schmoozy for short. Maybe you were there. It was the first time I’d gone in two years, and it was great to be able to attend as someone who was a part of the whole thing in my own small way. Guests wore excellent outfits channeling bond villains, matching the theme ‘License to Schmooze’. I watched one person remove an elbow-length white glove so that they could use their phone. There’s probably a niche for phone friendly elegant gloves. We love Halloween and black tie events for roughly the same reason: the chance to slip into a character, something other than what we usually are. Would we feel better psychically if Halloween happened roughly quarterly instead of annually?

After I left the party I went for a walk with some friends. The snow which had been on the ground recently was gone again. We sat at the edge of the river valley and drank cider while looking across at the lights from the university. It was temperate enough to sit outside in just my suit with no coat. The grass was still very alive. It doesn’t really need to be mentioned, but we do love to repeat ourselves: the river valley is a special place.

Sundays are a good time to sit down with maybe with a book, a cup of tea, and if you’re reading this, presumably the internet and allow yourself to consider how words affect the way you live your life. To help with this task, as always, I’ve shared a poem below. I hope it finds you well. As always, if you find this useful, share it with a friend, or leave a comment below. This is an attempt at conversation.


On Conversation

delete me
the cursor moves over
the text
and one keystroke
removes the image,

the words:

how do you write
we ask each other
with tight jaws
eyes locked
unblinking

this is a question
which is a foundation
of you and i.

you know flowers

you said
i don’t want to
have sex with men
anymore
and i looked desperately
at myself
wondering how i could change
and the grass was down there
delicate and simple,
and massive.

books on tape:
something from the heart;
you put pages
in my hands

i need you to read this.

sometimes i am today
and sometimes
two years ago
sweating in heat

going out of the neighbourhood to see you
i remember a large dog and i don’t know why.

it’s not easy
there are a lot of decisions
i tell you.

we set things up
and sometimes they don’t work
some things need to be remade
some things need to be moved around.

i feel sick to the stomach
almost all of the time.

do you wish people shared more on the internet?

when you are tucked in bed
with another person
hands between legs
bedtime stories
close together
maybe in the bath
mornings in the shower
coffee down the street.

we are across here
and there

we don’t forget

because we embrace

maybe once a machine
maybe something else.

to write something of length
takes special fortitude.

you want to write a novel.

i’m trying not to eat my lips off
and snack on my moustache
and devour my nose
suck at my eyeballs
floss my teeth with my hair.

when i write
i write for you
there are so many people
i could mean.

20,000 moments
and then i lost count.


This post was originally written on November 22, 2015 for Latitude 53, while I was their Writer in Residence.