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.

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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

like a goldfish in a bowl

img_0579img_0581img_0591

i am not stuck fast
but i am glue-slow
wading through wet cement
circa 1970
i drink sky and

what’s funny is
if you build glass where
it never stops raining
life will be as grey
as if you’d never bothered,
and just used concrete

you have to see that
shards are just as sharp
when they fall from phone boxes
as when they stand erect
and pierce the roof

of the world’s mouth

“and this world is
the one”, we shuddered
as we sped towards it
along the DLR tracks

of the darkest timeline
history taut as a tightrope

like a goldfish in a bowl

sour fruits

x ray earth ray
window to sea spray
a waterfall in negative

dust me with sherbet
then tell me just what
you want to do about it.

i would like to say
you are the same
when seen through a frame

but it shows me
another layer.
there is more to you

than you would like
me to know.
when you tell me

to go climb a tree
I will- a pine-
I will scrape all the skin

off my legs
leave them raw
purple-pink like meat

like the underneath
of you.
you are true. you are

stalactites, a tall salty
wave in slow motion.
crash down on me.

you hide in the corners
of yourself, eat an apple,
viciously, so it

makes your gums bleed
makes your sweat
squeeze through taste buds

sour fruits

when life gives you super-absorbent polymers

it doesn’t matter
how many times
you punch a pillow.
it always takes
the shock. i

wish i wish i was

like a punnet
of milky feathers

like a luminous
orange mouldable jelly

like the rubber
tiles under swings
at the playground

like things exhibited
at science fairs

like a crash
test dummy i

wish i wish i wish

it didn’t matter
how many times
you slice a lemon.
it always cuts
me up.

when life gives you super-absorbent polymers

reindeer heart soup

you are a delicacy here.
your silvery hide
like a dusty mirror.
your fluttering lashes

hide eyes like windows.
hoping you are
seen but not watched.
save your appetite.

you are a platinum fixture
in a golden ceiling.
alive but not moving,
willing but not hopeful.

no word is too long for you;
no heart too closed.
they must pour boiling water
down your throat.

reindeer heart soup