Most poetry books are launched (and many sold) at readings all over the UK. As I live in Spain, this is not possible for me, so here is the launch of my new collection, broken stories.
Copies may be obtained from the publisher, Rhys Jones at 20/20 Vision Media Publishing by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Get a copy for Christmas for yourself and friends and relations and, at the same time you can show your support for the small indie publishers who, in turn, support us.
So, it’s still there after all these years,
the imprint of his hand in the concrete –
and I’m having to describe it as his not mine,
not just to create some necessary distance,
but because it doesn’t actually belong to me.
You see? My hand doesn’t fit the mould.
It’s the hand of a boy just ten years old,
and the grey matter
that let him be inquisitive and reach out
has long ago hardened.
Back then, at the age of ten,
the soft smooth blandness of cement
was definitely meant
to be livened up by fingerprints and lifelines –
a way of making permanent the future.
Now, it’s just the past set in stone,
and here I am, alone,
recalling the beating –
the glimpse, fleeting,
of your crazed face
as I fell to the ground –
all thanks to this memory aid,
the imprint I made
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A new type of sparrow, the sex-sparrow,
has started spiralling en masse out of sex shops,
and vigilantes –
claiming the escaping birds
are attacking women and children –
have been taking them down
with bows and arrows and sling-shots.
Problem is, these sex-sparrows
look exactly the same as ordinary sparrows,
and many people –
who’ve swallowed whole the vigilantes’ claims –
are taking no chances
and taking down any sparrows they see.
Unfortunately, it’s already too late to undo the damage done.
Virtually all sparrows – sex or otherwise – have now been killed,
and the great and terrible famine of censorship has already begun.
We, the PLO (Pedestrian Liberation Organisation),
do hereby swear, on the sacred Highway Code,
that those who dare to attempt to kill pedestrians as they cross the road
will, from tomorrow, incur the deadly wrath of London’s Shining Path.
The revolution will not be televised – it will be pedestrianised –
and our enemies had better watch out.
White van man – each morning, for fun, you try to run
pedestrians over at the zebra crossing at the start of Shaftsbury Avenue.
You arrogant sod: You need to know that what you do
will, tomorrow, be avenged by a PLO hit-squad.
Hippy cyclist – too busy having dreams about saving the planet, it seems,
to think about pedestrians when you jump the lights at Bishopsgate.
You’re so into human rights,
except when it comes to people travelling round London on foot.
Well, be left in no doubt: Tomorrow, the PLO…
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She shot up as I pissed
I paid 30 pence for the privilege
She paid with her life story
It was motivation need for us both
I didn’t expect to see her
She didn’t give a flying fuck about me
We stood by the sinks
I dropped a tissue, she dropped a needle
Bound by our femininity
Drawn to the lady on the door
Smells of used tampons and cheap disinfectant
I left, turned, never saw her again
Her choices were limited
I ran for the suburbs
I put 50 pence in the charity tin
She begged for the next fix
Sequence after Celan1Spring: trees flying up to their birds where the sun is the seeds are freed their small sound a wound like death watercoloured and open each foliated lung with its breathing understory the climb of springtime into the loud light sky filled with dove-coloured words 2the climbed evening is thick with lung-scrub a nocturne of oxygen of spring sillage the raising of the dead and their flowers the night deer with hooves of heather the precision of an owl in *rooted darkness in the tangled bramble a knot of blood 3water needles stitch up the split shadow-he fights his way deeper down, free rain wholly itself a breathing torrent hitting the half-lit a million microdazzles a mouse mud-buried a blinking scut the fluency of a softer death a spring nothingness a heart-smoke 4in the air, there your root remains, there, in the…
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Reuben Woolley has a beautiful new book out titled Broken Stories (Wales: 20/20 Vision). I’m still reading it and connecting dots but Reuben appears to me to be working in the Objectivist mode. What really connects Woolley with Oppen and the other members of this group is not only the form he gives his work but the absolute sincerity evident in the manner, the mode, and the subjects he chooses to consider in his writing. Congratulations are in order.