photograph of a moment

i walk into a shop with a smashed window. it smells strongly of cleaning fluid, and there is a large puddle on the floor. the man behind the till is watching youtube videos on his phone and does not seem to notice. the light in here is sickly and yellow. there are jars of pickled things. dried milk. dried fruit. dried noodles.

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photograph of a moment

stroll, cont.

gallery road, someone has written, in reference to the huge colourful scrawls lining the no mans’ land between tracks and building site. NOT TRUE, i want to scream. galleries are not so organic.

greenlight leaning over the tracks, poised. another train hums casually over.

a man up ahead appears at first glance to be pissing, but actually he is sketching a bush.  he is wearing earbuds. i wonder what he is listening to.

it’s too painful to stand on this viewing platform; the drilling is too loud. at least there is a creek today; it flows like a fat slug in the rain. brambles reach into the walkway and i find myself looking for the cracks, the in-between, the clues, caught between decimation and desolation.

this kind of barbed wire looks like a fleur de lis.

the smell of sawdust. cigarette butts and polystyrene. moudly apple core.

luxury flats overlooking the sewage treatment works.

stroll, cont.

Stroll

Frankham Street smells like an armpit.

Further along this devolves into garam masala and chlorine.

The arches of the train track are all dripping mildew and piss.

Techno scrawled over techno in different coloured paint.

GCHQ= STATS! in melting white.

The roof drips into tiny gravel pits, makes pigeons jump.

A huge crude face on one, tentacles on the next.

Wake up? in red.

Plants burst through cracks in the brick.

A train thunders overhead.

I step into a cloud of mosquitoes.

Stroll

BINSEY (rewrite)

i stood in that hollow
once before
you raised me well
taught no feeling

bound up in tape
resurrected
image projected
on concrete wall

dug out by shovel
gouged by fist
i’ve been away
too long

what made you cold?
who made you
all angles
and darkness?

just a scrawl, child
running
down the cave wall
vowels at the mouth

windows, unhinged
hanging
white plastic wings
on cold stucco birds

what held you apart?
pushed you
together
in the black?

broken now into blue
grey
face burned out
standing on the other shore

how do i
swim
to you through this water
two whole feet deep?

i stood in that hollow
once before
neon tubes flickering
too far can’t reach

bring me up to speed now; who
did what, who
died? i’ve been away
too long

fibreglass boards for eyes
cheap
salvaged from bin bonfires
gas leaks

cards in wheel spokes
deal after
deal, loud, dressed
in red, yellow, blue

colours running, the sun
gone
replaced by
“THESE HAZARDS ARE-“

i stood in that hollow
once before
i’ve been away
too long

BINSEY (rewrite)

A Hole To Crawl Through

5 am siren wakes you, sits you

bolt upright into the bleached-pink

sulfur-yellow sun birth

crooked arms reaching ether, extending

hooked tree-claws, bed

full of muttering feathered shadows

unseen pavement glitters

with remnants of night

(stacks & accidents & lost things)

that unknown distant roaring;

same in every city, provincial town,

on mountains; morning earth chant

clouds cream up curved walls of sky

stirred by the sun’s golden spoon

and poured into shining mirror-windows

through two layers to be absorbed by

your eyes; upside-down and distilled

into one stinging fluorescent needle

sound is clearer, brighter

in the hours between, reserved

for being round-edged and murmuring

lie back on pillows, drinking

soft brownness from a chipped pastel cup

light slowly crystallising your form

into something harder, less

prophetic; likely not to witness

an accidental sunrise.

A Hole To Crawl Through