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Old friend, learn to look behind you in the coffee queue

Also by Huckleberry Hax: AFK (2007) AFK, Again (2013) AFK, Indefinitely (2014) AFK, in Pursuit of Avengement (2015) AFK, Awaiting (2017) AFK, All of it (2018) Be right back (2008) My Avatars and I (2009) Your clothing is still downloading (2012) Amazing Metaverse (short stories) (2016) by Huckleberry H. Hax: Beside an Open Window (2014) The Day is Full of Birds (2008) The Introspection of Imogen Card (2011) SIM (2016) Second Life is a Place We Visit (collected articles) (2015)

Old friend, learn to look behind you in the coffee queue HUCKLEBERRY H. HAX

Copyright Š 2011 by Huckleberry H. Hax All rights reserved This edition published in 2018 Huckleberry H. Hax is hereby identified as author of this work in accordance with Section 77 of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 Published by ISBN: 978-0-244-12375-8 Cover design by Huckleberry Hax

'At the beach' was first published in 'The Poems & The Souls Of The Poets: VE Day Poetry Competition Entries and Winners' 2009 (Joint first position). 'Snow Day' and 'Ice' were first published in 'Blue Angel Landing' volume one, issue one, 2009. 'Phone' was first published in 'Urban District Writer' Issue 11, 2010. 'Aspie' was first published in the Tiatopia Autism Awareness Project poetry compilation, 2010. 'The loudness of tiny, inside noises' was first published in the 'Poets for Haiti' poetry compilation, 2010.

Contents At the beach 1 Proton 2 The Magician 3 Sunflower Eyes 4 In Salon Six 5 Bossiney Haven 6 Electric stapler 8 Butterfly 9 Snow Day 10 Union matters 12 Heartburn 13 Ice 14 Final day 15 Text 16 Academy 17 Jade 18 Phone 19 Home 20 Fatal crosspost (senryĹŤ) 21 Many, many 22 Egg hunt 23 Bullet 24 In pieces 26 Run time 28 To hell with the recognition of random acts of kindness 29 Danger (senryĹŤ) 30 We are moving 31 Old friend, learn to look behind you in the coffee queue 32 Rocks (limerick) 33 10 34 A plea to my head 35 The loudness of tiny, inside noises 36 Aspie 38 Miracle 39 Nancy 40 How dissonance works 41 The polarisation of issue 52 42 My Blog is not for you 43

At the Sheraton 45 The best books 46 VHS 47 Agendas 48 Look at me 50 Stuff 51 Top floor café 52 First kiss 53 Stosh 54 Black, plastic bags 55 Reconfiguration 57 Kill it 59 Dream 61 Message to the Fédération Internationale de Football Association, for a goal is just a goal and enough of this (senryū) 62 For the little girl is coming 63 Camborne 65 Why I should always sleep on stuff 66 Moth 67 Interregnum 68 Deep breaths 69 To Tyler 72 Ex-lovers' vows 74 Two truths 76 Did you poison it? 77 Out 84

For Perse, with thanks.

At the beach My body warmed by others packed tight, we sway together as we bounce across waves, grey stones flicked from a distant shore. Soaked by salt mist, dried by the wind; sometimes we stumble; sometimes we touch the elbows of our friends, gently. I think of seaside smells and try to find at least one in the air around me. I try to find the sound of seagulls, but the birds are absent this morning. These last few minutes of my life, I shall be certain to know them completely. When my cheek ends up resting upon wet sand, I will try to think of the waves washing up against my flesh as water lapping over rocks, as it must. The lifeguard's whistle blows, and we are jumping, splashing, wading. Arms raised out of the water, we hold our spades above our heads. We charge: golden sands and a pebble bank our objective. Then, as I know it has to, the burning enters into me. Once, twice, three times I am punctured, like a swift rap on the door; punched, pierced by someone distant, who moves on. My legs stop moving and my body begins to empty itself. Just like that, it has happened. I stumble forward, my face smacks against the sea. These last few seconds of my life, I shall be certain to know them completely. Water is moving backwards and forwards through my hair, and I marvel that waves still know how to work today. I breathe blood. I find another to look at, we lock gazes for a few final seconds. Our blood mixes in the waters between us. I try to find the sound of seagulls, but the birds are absent this morning. August 2008 1

Proton At the flick of a switch, finally, I am released. I fly. And, in my circular passage, I see you in a snapshot; your breath baited; your pen poised. Did you let just a little of the doubt into your thoughts this morning? When you kissed your boy, did you pause? Did you take a final look as you left, just in case? Did you sit in your car and dismiss your feelings? And then turn the key, switch on the news; damn the ignorant, who have not listened? When they debated me, did you notice the little ears listening? Perhaps you got distracted by gravity, how it bent the spotlight. You missed something in the shadows: small eyes turned suddenly to large questions chanced upon. Small minds grappling with enormous finality, squeezed tiny. A bug beneath the light shade that has to be watched. Which bites. This one can swallow the world whole. And even bigger questions. So, when I am destroyed, which will be the greater consequence? My innards, bursting into the birth of space across your lens? Or is it the final looks given by children this morning? They are changed now, forever different in small, but important ways. Their very own Cuba has washed in around their ankles; though the waves have now receded once more, their toes remain curled tightly in the sand. September 2008 2

The Magician He holds us together, spellbound, entranced by his alchemy. Things borrowed, things taken away, become whole again, bought. We buy, or rather we fund the purchase, unknowingly. And again. He speaks to us softly, he puts gifts into our hands. And now, with a snap of his fingers, it is ended. Suddenly, we are a society of minus figures, overwhelmed. The gold is gone; our pockets have been picked. It seems unreal, how much it was we stared, how long it was we wished, how much it was we willed it to be real. And the magician leaves unchallenged, his pockets bulging. September 2008


Sunflower Eyes This garden was your theatre, the lichen covered walls the edges of a world that began and ended in summer. Who, who came here, will not think of you, the twinkle in the corner watching laughter, splashed across the lawn. You were content to look upon the smiles of others knowing you could not have any more yourself. October 2008


In Salon Six In Salon six, on Christmas Eve, the old man in red entered and waved his stick with traditional menace, yet no small degree of trepidation: these godforsaken children made screams audible from the view of mountains and snow outside. And Rosa stuffed her mouth so full of boiled sweets her lips would not close. It looked like the inside of her was made of stained glass, just waiting for light within to shine through. December 2008


Bossiney Haven Off the beach, at Bossiney Haven, it is an easy thing to do to let the currents move you gently. You feel the connection still to the broken shore before you, where land is firm and rock is solid, where water showers you at the tip of the triangle slice. It is an easy thing to look upon that golden secret you discovered, and shut your eyes, and imagine it there before you, always, and float, and dream. And open, see the shore pulled suddenly distant, feel cold waters tugging at your shoulders. It is an easy thing to panic, to fight for breath, to thrash, to be gripped with the sudden fear, that this distant look could be the last you have and all else left to view will be flat, featureless sea until finally you are swallowed by it. It is a tale with a single, inevitable ending; but sometimes, just sometimes, the angel is watching, and dives. Warm hands pull you from your panic, deliver you to the shore, sit beside you, gently. And you realise that you have just been saved. And further that nearly drowning has an upside: 6

it can make you a better swimmer. February 2009


Electric stapler Electric stapler. Alligator. Waiting still. Stapler will let you near, absorb your fear. Trap. Snap. February 2009


Butterfly Your shadow formed across me and I tensed. Your necklace hung before me in my gaze. With each new month that's passed since have I sensed the end upon my caterpillar haze. Not once before a lover had I wept or known the joy that naked, safely, brings. Everything in safety you have kept, my trust in you is air beneath new wings. Reborn, the world is altered in my sight. Now words become the breath I need to draw. Scared, for I stand lonely in this light; drawn to be inside your eyelids evermore. Through words and letters I am woken. Through thoughts and whispers be they spoken. February 2009


Snow Day On Snow Day, the Internet gets turned off. We look up the frequency of local radio, tune in for the first time in eighteen years, attend to the list of schools shut, tut at elderly listeners phoning to say a bit of snow never stopped the world from turning in their time (and your money was safe in banks back then, too). We assess the road in thin light, make our minds up, call in to work. We await exclamations and hurried feet on the stairs. Out in the street, the neighbours are talking, making out like we actually know each other. “Did you hear some guy drove into one of the holes they're digging in the road?� We spread the word; we head on down, passed by a rescue truck. At the yellow tape we spend time discussing it with our fellow strangers. There are those who talk about the lost art of braking; others assert it was a hole just waiting to be filled with something, and maybe they should have thought about the forecast before digging it. The boy watches the crane at work. Just the other day, I was driving him back from gymnastics when some idiot on the radio started talking about hoof prints he used to press for his son at Christmas, in the night. Is it too much to ask for a little thought of a Saturday afternoon? Do they just assume no child in the land will be listening? He's not the only man in the world who's noted an extra use for the rim of a grande cappuccino mug. Luckily, just then, a white van in the oncoming traffic cut across me; I was able to cover up 10

the revelation with loud cursing, tossed in a CD whilst I swore. Even so, we avoided looking in each other's direction after that. I got told last year it's time I stopped trying to prolong magic now, accept that nine year olds don't need to believe that any more. But today, on Snow Day, he declares himself my personal plough, instructs me to walk behind in the path he clears, makes engine noises with his lips. Sings. We roll a giant ball of snow together. He plays until the light is nearly gone. We take a night-time walk and look over fences, complain about unused snow “going to waste�: there's a snowman in our garden who could use some of that. We chat. The Snow Day has blown open a closing door, and I am grateful. Let me watch. Let me look at him one more time like this, as I always thought he would remain. February 2009


Union matters He tells me: "I expect you to help me." I imagine him throwing the email, flinging it at me across the office; red skin at the edges, where his beard is flecked white. Pointing. Wheezing. Rasping. I imagine him at the top of the stairs. Gasping. Throwing papers down. Refusing help. Demanding I assist him. I imagine him swilling from his chocolate drink, laughing. He stands behind, whilst I try to work. He tells me his theories. February 2009


Heartburn Heartburn is a hijacked word. Surely it should mean longing, craving, staring-into-nothingness-yearning. That sort of thing. Who the hell attached it to indigestion? The idiot. February 2009


Ice For the ice outside stays perfect. A week ago you'd have never guessed the burning at the centre, the private grief at loss unknown, that there was anything to lose in the first place. A single crack could be the top of a slippery slope. It is extraordinary how no-one seems to notice, particularly in the morning, when there is a slight melting in the two corners. February 2009


Final day From the office, I heard outside the cheerful banter, the greeting for the girl who had come to school for her final day. The happy sort of joking that grown-ups do in front of children; the little show put on for courage. My, what a fashionable coat you have! And so on. Her voice was tiny, lost; I didn't hear a single one of her replies. The entourage passed the office door. I saw cameras held tightly through the window. After it was over, the teacher swept past, pursued. I heard the embrace, the firm instruction away from watching eyes. The door to the next room closed. From the office, through the wall, I heard muffled grief, tears for the girl who had come to school for her final day. March 2009


Text In this place, meetings always start late. It is no surprise to be told to take a seat, to wait, that 'someone will be with' me. In my spot, corporate images look upon me seductively, inform me that this is a place of excellent time keeping. The innocent words, thrown upon out-of-focus backgrounds, are forced to paint their lies at gunpoint. But I see none of this. Time to spare plus a good signal equals sudden opportunity. A single sentence later, my day is somehow different. No font, no scientifically determined kern, no million dollar colour scheme has been employed. No words have been harmed in the making of this message. Somehow, it feels like a victory for text. And I, once again, count myself lucky to have someone to read my messages. March 2009


Academy Oh, the promises they made, those fresh-faced, would-be educators: "All will be welcome with us," they claimed. "No-one will be cast out!" Well, they did come in the name of God. After all. When we, the infidels, heard that claim, we did our best wry chuckles, winked as we played with it on our tongues. It became a catchphrase; a handshake. We took bets on how long it would be, and how many. We had no idea. Yes, we laughed. But you went to work for them. And today you sat before us, yet another child to be thrown upon the sands squeezed between your manila covers. Rest assured, your red face was commented on later. But no-one laughed this time. None of this now is even remotely funny. March 2009


Jade I'm hardly a fan, you're saying now, but this I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy. Everyone nods, gravely. Someone mentions the kids. Gordon lets everyone know he knows, of course, and praises with sub-clauses attached. Out of interest, when you called her a fucking bitch - you do remember saying that, right? - when you wet yourself with excitement at the prospect of the exit to boos, to jeers; when you delighted in a career destroyed, did you not then imagine this was a mother who could in theory become ill? I'm just curious to know how this empathy of yours fits into the larger picture. I'm like that. If she does go all the way - become Truman, but reversed - will you watch? Will you weep when her eyes shut and, if you do, will it make any actual difference? March 2009


Phone God damn that phone, how it looked at me from that spot on the table, like a gun all lined up for some shooting, grinning its cigar smile of 12 perfect teeth, telling me how I lacked the balls to pull the trigger. I picked that bastard up and punched in my combination (hoping it hurt). But the doubts attacked, with my finger still tickling the green. It was like an extra voice from the corner of the room: "Put the gun down, son." I tossed it on the desk and raised arms, helplessly. I drank coffee in a different room. Then, when it was least expecting it, I pounced. I held it in my hands, tight; gave myself a count of five, but went on three. "Hello?" March 2009


Home Beneath the layers, somewhere, are the clues to my existence. I know just where to look, but I prefer most days to let them gather dust. March 2009


Fatal crosspost (senryĹŤ) Few horrors rival the moment of wrong window realisation. March 2009


Many, many In the bar at midnight, we stood and sang, and shook hands and kissed cheeks. We raised glasses of fruit flavoured fizz and ate green grapes for each of the months to come. They have just one song for forward-facing days: they sing for many more years of life to follow. Two hours passed and then they stood again for us, the Brits. The snow fell on the new year's ground outside whilst they sang us happy birthday. April 2009


Egg hunt Shiny stuff peeking out from behind stones and pots and garden gnomes and clumps of other... growing stuff. If the sun should shine they'll come across this stuff as litter tomorrow. If no kid should find these things, that is. Which is, let's face it, unlikely. Here they come. Pushing past each other to be first with their bucket. Their bucket. Their BUCKET full of flavoured fat (that's what we call chocolate, Europe tells us). Parents watch; big smiles at the shouting, and the squabbles they dismiss as, well, 'kids'. It's an Easter tradition apparently. April 2009


Bullet So. Let me see. What would be a good thing to say? Which weak spot shall I aim for? How many times will I hit him? And how will I dress it up, my dears, so that only he will know that my bullet has his name on it? What metaphor shall I use? What cultural references shall I throw in? Something classic? It will lend me more authority. After all, I'm not one of these kids, you know; it's not like I'm posting teenage hate on Bebo. If you like, I am the sniper, sitting on a rooftop half a mile away. When my bullet hits, that boy will drop, and no-one will know what hit him. Unless I tell them. And I'm not interested in putting one through his heart or through his eyes. My target is his soul. So. I need a setting. I need a clever context. A person in history, perhaps, with all the right associations (people can look it up on Wikipedia after and see just how learned and observant I am). Maybe an animal? Maybe a sky? Maybe a colour you add 24

to fabric? Dare I play on words? I might just, you know; I might just. I can smile at those who see it and grin, a little cheekily, and I can show those who frown my middle fucking finger. I'm from the street, you see. I write haiku with my knuckles. Of course, I'm not just one of those kids, you know. Then there is the issue of audience and timing, who I want to be there as witness and who I want as hapless, oblivious bystander. My moment, if it is right, will win me my longevity. And I will help the doubters through their dissonance by reminding them of what an utter fuckwit he was and by whispering in their ear just how much I love them. It is all so kinaesthetic. It is all such poetry. April 2009


In pieces "He said it's because I'm lazy, which I know I am," she said. I'm hardly going to disagree. Inside, her inactivity sits in piles on the carpet and the stairs and is stacked up beside the kitchen sink. Out here it blocks out the sunlight and threatens the felt. Before we start, we audit our requirements and come up short by a saw. "You know," she says, "I think I might have left it at his place." For sure, it's under something in her shed, but we make the trip to the store anyway and she tells me how he dumped her in a text. I do my usual tangent thing; I wonder if it's time someone invented a word for that as we look at the step ladders. It is good to work with the sun on your neck. Perhaps that tree didn't need cutting up into quite so many pieces. "It's not like I'm so different now," she says, as she brings out tea, "than from when I first met him." Which actually does get me thinking. Is it five years now? Is it six? 26

It's nearly twelve since his predecessor; that much I do know. "Oh well," she says. And she launches into recent anecdote. His story is in pieces now, neatly sawn. Fuel for future conversations. April 2009


Run time My ex-trainer asks me how I did. "Four minutes better than last year," I tell him, and add the time, thinking he will understand the significance of that! But compliments are hard to come by, these days. I get no 'well done,' but a tale instead of some friend of his who did it twelve minutes faster, and that was after she did the first mile alongside some old guy. In fairness, it is a pretty good story. I mutter something about having a long way yet to go and climb the stairs to the gym, reminding myself to expect nothing from no-one. And trying to put aside the thought that there was something else being said. After all, he is my ex trainer. April 2009


To hell with the recognition of random acts of kindness So caught up was I with wondering who or what the muse today would be, I almost didn't hear the guy offer me his ticket. The first thought I had was to bet myself it would only have twenty or thirty minutes. I planned on pretending gratitude and waiting 'til he'd driven round the corner. But this was a hardcore stub of eight rounded hours of parking; not only that, but he looked like he could have made a claim. I took it, with thanks, and opened my boot, and went back to wondering what to write my poem about. May 2009


Danger (senryĹŤ) Danger is five sixths anger, the rest carelessness: not watching Detail. June 2009


We are moving We are moving. We are moving. We are going up the road to where we'll sit in different places. We are moving. We are packing. We are moaning. We know nothing good can come of being there. Yes, yes I heard you. Yes, it's dreadful we are moving. I agree; I really do. They will not listen. It's not their nature. But we are moving. No discussion. Consultation? You are joking. We are going; they're saying Tuesday. Maybe Wednesday. Guys are coming to do lifting. We are smiling (silver lining). Maybe Thursday, we are moving. Up the road, they do things different. It's an ending. We're descending into just the sort of chaos we've been warning. No equipment. Fuck 'hot-desking'! Yes, I heard you. Yes I know it is the end, it will not work and I will miss you too. But please we are moving. August 2009


Old friend, learn to look behind you in the coffee queue My radar picks him off at twelve feet, time enough to fake procrastination at the cake stand. Yeah, like I'd really contemplate a 'lemon drizzle' with the sort of coffee I buy. But it gives me the time I need to think about whether I want to abort or not. The street does try to suck me back. But this is coffee. And, furthermore, it's time we had this moment. Of course, I pretty much know exactly how it's going to play. You don't walk side-by-side with someone for nearly thirty years of life and not learn how to see the way the ball will probably roll. As attentive as ever, he lets me come right up next to him. And, when the pretence can be stretched no longer, I look. I smile. I see the panic in his eyes. We say polite hellos and then polite goodbyes. September 2009


Rocks (limerick) I have to write something on rocks? As in off? In SL? As in cocks? At the newbie's hard pride, Tidd Kidd said, as she sighed: To think it was once a pine box. September 2009


10 bounce look over the side look down from above look up to the sky and bounce when your legs shake when your heart thumps when you're too tired to try, still bounce the more that you move the more that you see the more that you'll need to bounce the world will grow grey it's painted that way on murkiness, feed. And bounce September 2009


A plea to my head Sometimes, head, it isn't enough. Sometimes, I need to shout, I need to use words like 'hate' and 'bitch' and 'fucking unfair'. Fucking. Un. Fair. I promise I won't let them out of our sight. It'll just be here. It'll just be now. Just between the two of us, and no-one will be the wiser. The smile will remain in place and normality will be unperturbed. Completely. If you want, you can sit and regard with disdain throughout; wave virtues in my face. Well, wave away. Wave away. But don't do the hypocrite thing, and God - please God - I can do without the health stuff. I do reframe. I do see the bigger pictures. But sometimes I can't find any other angle. Sometimes a fuck is a fuck and enough of the niceties. October 2009


The loudness of tiny, inside noises Outside, the wind can blow and dogs can howl, and nothing wakes me. The guy next door could only ever start a conversation with some sort of comment about outside, midnight noises, and I'd nod and tut accordingly, but only to keep him off the topic of immigration. Once, I slept through every bin being emptied, every car mirror being smashed. I sleep the sleep of the dead. I dream of exaggerations; pointless things, gone within a single moment of consciousness. So it's not as though I even have big things to show for my total, utter absence. Mostly. And yet, the smallest of inside noises flick open my eyes to the silent black, to absolute, rigid stillness; to straining, sifting through the creaking of dust and the rustling of carpet. Waiting. For. Something. The tapping, I realise now, is just the sound of water dripping; and I know by heart the crash the calendar makes when it falls from the kitchen door. But that little, electric tinkle I heard, that sound of distant pixels playing still eludes me. Just that once, it called: over and over, and wherever I walked in blindess neither closer, neither further did it seem. 36

In the end, I had to sleep, knowing it was there; knowing it could not be found. October 2009


Aspie I think in fine detail, learn and apply the rules, see things that you miss, am not easily distracted, will continue until it's done, am only interested in completely, am not concerned by social influence. I laugh at obscure semantic links because they are things of beauty. I am an asset. I am not broken. December 2009


Miracle In that hollowed-out place, seasonal magic came, not in boxes with receipts included, but in coloured sweets and biscuits. And the tree bare at bedtime, glorious upon the morning of the feast. It was enough. Songs and poetry bound small pieces together. Because nothing engages small minds as detail left unseen. But some things dreamt of can be seen She'd taken the coin she'd found to the shop and exchanged it for a box of matches. Now she held her breath as she lit the candles on the Christmas tree. On her beautiful tree. On her tree made splendid by Saint Nicholas. And she watched the evergreen needles burst apart. Like dominoes, fast forwarded, they passed their flame from branch to branch and in a crackle that sounded like fabric ripping it consumed her glorious tree. It ate the paper chains and it melted the plastic trinkets that dangled, that mother had collected over twenty years. And her tree fell to the floor in front of her, with a sigh, sending magical sparks in showers across the sofa and the rug. And quietly, she left, descended, crossed the snow covered concrete to the house where mother sat and talked. And joined in. And tried to look happy. And wished for a Christmas miracle. December 2009 39

Nancy Still your profile greets me, still its words denote your endless sense of Second Life amusement. Still the real life section in it wryly quotes your frequent sense of Alice-like bemusement. Still our window opens with our last chat greyed; When you told me you could not be long here stopping. Still I see my farewell, blithely bade. Still I read about your shopping. Shopping! SHOPPING! Still your blog is packed with loved illusions, and such tales as Aunts in Athens feeding birds. In your journal's final post, you suffered no delusions. And now, you are gone, but... still I have your thoughts, Nancy; still I have your words. You leave us as the light of morning nears. Your friends around the world share smiles and tears. December 2009


How dissonance works Write a sitcom, I told him. Put all these issues and family quirks to use. Next time your mother makes one of those comments, don't wince, don't fume, don't spend hours, days, weeks ruminating over how that "just says it all, Huck" - write it down. Record it. Do your best smile of indifference and thank her in your head for the new material. Treat each comment as a gift. Relish the laughs they will give you. Cope. But why stop rumination? It is, after all, the tobacco of mental free time. I think he probably thought to himself, "it's not as though I chain-smoke." But he does. And he knows how to knock back a beer or two. Or three. Last night, he managed to mistake his host's laptop for a urinal. It seems rumination is now a painful place to be. "I'm thinking of writing a sitcom," he said. January 2010 41

The polarisation of issue 52 What a surprise. The plastics are making out we're some sort of lunatics. Again. Using that same old pained expression, no doubt. Words like 'reasonable' and 'rational' liberally applied. They don't mention the melting, of course. And the failure of the FFI to distribute properly before the Richards case is conveniently absent, and if it isn't you can expect the old "we learned from our mistakes" loophole. Oh yes. This is nothing new. We've seen this kind of bullshit many times before. In all likelihood, the government's involved. Well. Think of all the money they must be saving. Something has to pay for all that excess 51 we bought. Read it if you will. But don't believe a word. They're lunatics. They don't believe in reason. And us? We are here for you always. Listen to what we say. Believe us. Trust us. Accept that what I say is right. See me. Love me. January 2010


My Blog is not for you My blog is not for you. It's where I play. It's where I cook up black and white. It's where I make believe in logic, in pattern, in rationality mine, you understand. I need the lens it gives me; I need the time, the space, the cold, hard limitations of text. My blog is not for you. Even words that make no sense help sketch the noise. Even nonsense that I can draw a line straight through (that is, delete) needs first to be written out, regardless. It is the writing, the act, the movement, the feel of the words formed through my fingers that turns tangle into something just that little bit tidier. My blog is not for you. Even so, I need to know that you are there, once in every now and then - at least in principle, at least in possibility. Through making things make sense to you, the murk becomes less muddy. A bit. Even if you never come. Even if no-one ever stops to look upon my muddle. Dearest Kitty, you are all I have. You are the only eyes I write for. But


my blog is not for you. February 2010


At the Sheraton At the Sheraton, they charged for rolls and the wraps never got rotated. But, just around the corner was a Sub, and a bench where the birds knew how to beg. And further still was a cafe with outside tables, and I think from there we could just about spot the hat. I took my coffee with syrup. Now I'm back on plain - partly because it's better for me, partly so I don't use up the association that I want sweet coffee in sunshine always to offer. We talked between symposia about the revelations of the soul and the nature of that big red sign by the fountain. Still I think of South Street and of Franklin and of sitting across the table and of hours swallowed up by flow. It was easy to enjoy you. And that place will always be good. And that time will always be golden. March 2010


The best books It didn't really matter, just so long as it became a need, a requirement that the time to next instalment be as short as humanly possible. But the in-between was just as dear. That was when I looked outside the window and got lost in contemplation. It was just like being in love. March 2010


VHS Then. Prone, he squints at digits fastforwarding, finger held pressed. Await the instant of start. Await the instant of stop. Don't forget to rewind the tape. And only at weekends. Can't afford our own. Now. They're en route to the green bin anyway; who can blame a desire to open one up, pull the innards out, dance across the grass with ferrous oxide coated ribbons of glory streaming, magnificently, behind? In a breeze, his grandfather's fascination floats... March 2010


Agendas Because I'm the only one she's told, perhaps? Because there is no-one else who will listen? It's late. The background hum of vacuum cleaning stops, and the quiet becomes more still. She is frowning (which means thinking). And I, not for the first time, ponder my presence in this little room with the incongruous table lamp, tucked into the far corner of the building. She tells me yes and no in equal measure, she flatters me, she challenges me, she reaches out to touch and stroke me, she frowns at me (which means she's thinking), she confides in me, she looks carefully in my direction, gently probes, searches... ...I change the subject, hide my smile (but not completely). Because she knows we are both alone? Because she sees some sort of commonality? Well, I don't. So how much courtesy does 'money in the pot' extend to? And, in any case, If I did stand up and point out a line. Would it get laughed at? Or challenged? 48

Or would she frown? March 2010


Look at me Look at me. Don't avert your gaze as we pass. You know who I am. Look at me. Don't glance nervously to your right to see if she saw me, or saw you looking. So what if she did? Look at me! Look at me now and show me you see my eyes. Face me. I'm not just any old passer-by. Look at me! Our time is as much a part of my face as the seasons. So what if she sees? So what if she thinks you care? Look at you! Look at your hair! Look at your waist! Look at your eyes, man! Where's the wannabe soldier? Where's the guy who'd walk ten miles to work each day because it mattered? Where's the guy who sang Jerusalem every Friday night on Guinness? Where's the joker? Where's the athlete? Where's the fucking fighter? Look at you. Look at what you've done to yourself. So what if she sees? Look at me. I'm your friend of thirty years. Look at me. March 2010 50

Stuff Magazines and cover discs stacked up on shelves and dusty. Nails and screws - you never know - in drawers and going rusty. Bits of old computer, Christ knows why I haven't chucked it. Tools and tapes and leads and games. Piles of boxed-up bullshit. Books on top of books, long past their standing upright days. A hundred vinyl records - more - that no-one ever plays. A film collection. DVDs. (Each audience numbered one.) This stuff is evidence of life? Who'll judge so when I'm gone? It made sense at the time. It did. It somehow felt like progress. A substitute for living, stuff to occupy an address. It wraps itself around my legs, it whispers how I like it. You think I give a damn? I don't. Now find a match... ...and strike it. April 2010


Top floor cafĂŠ As she rose, smoothly, into view, delivered to the vast carpet by the final escalator, the first thing I recognised was her smile. I thought, "maybe you are the one". We held each other briefly, took to the coffee stand and questioned the teas. I waited to be asked the question always previously answered with those two, flippant syllables. "Not today, I won't," I decided. We discussed the aetiology of fatigue, the big family secret tumbling from her lips halfway through, and it wasn't like it especially needed the airing. "So you see," she said. And so I did, as usual. As she slid, slowly, out of view, the last thing I heard was the question: "And you're ok?" I smiled back. Waved goodbye. "I'm fine." April 2010


First kiss It is not a moment slowed; it is just the air between us thinning. It waits on us; it watches, clinging. It is not a moment slowed; it is just two bubbles touching, sticking; it is oily colours swirling, mixing. It is not a moment slowed; it is just two gazes halting, thinking, turning to each other, meeting. It is just two people sensing, needing. It is not a moment slowed, for inside our hearts are thumping, speeding; inside, the moment races, stealing the whatever-it-was that we were seeing before. Now allofthat is fading, disappearing... It is not a moment slowed; it is the space between two mouths dissolving. It is doubt cast away, it is need resolving. It is lips slowly brushing. It is eyelids closing. It is tasting. It is trusting. It is feeling every millisecond flowing. It is life's essence, in anticipation, grinning. It is beginning. April 2010


Stosh Big event. Lots of other poets. This poet enters. This poet chuckles. Other poets hear this poet's chuckle. Oops. Microphone left open again. Other poets chuckle also. In text. Other poets welcome this poet before she has a chance to register on their radars. Happily. Other poets pleased this poet is with them. Other poets love this poet, her poems, her wisdom, her wit, her chuckle. There's a whole load of life-the-way-it's-meant-to-feel in that laugh. And an understanding that life's too short to do anything other than celebrate. Before she's even started reading, other poets feeling happier. Glad they came. This poet chuckles once more, gets ready to start and - oh dear crashes. April 2010


Black, plastic bags My aunt - she's one of those not-actually-aunts-but-some-sort-of-cousin once said to me, "Well, you must do whatever you think is best, but if you ask me, some children are just born evil." Born evil. I've always wondered how a god-fearing woman imagines such a system to work. Exactly who or what decides which babies get sprinkled with bad? And how does that all fit in with everything else? Because doesn't everything have to fit together in the eyes of these people? Isn't there meant to be a reason for everything? Isn't it all meant to be something quite simple underneath, somehow? Something not messy? Something not so fucking unfair? She said, "I'll give you an example." She told me about a boy from her days on the beat, a looked after kid in foster care. "Those new parents gave him everything a child could ever want," she said. "And he didn't appreciate it not a single bit." That was how she saw it. Born evil. The details of him were irrelevant. And that was decades ago. And I wonder what she knows - or thinks she knows - of how it works now. That kids in care move placement sometimes several times a year - and that when it's time to go they get given black plastic bags to put all their stuff in. Black, plastic bags. The type you put garbage in. That's what they get told today: your life is garbage. Your life is trash. Your life is ours to do with as we please. I once heard of a kid who got fostered with his sister when their parents 55

got sent down and it looked for a while like it really would work out ok. But one morning, the foster dad keeled over and died - just like that - and bang in the middle of a man-to-man chat with his boy. And they didn't have any families that could take two kids, so the boy and his sister got sent to separate cities for two whole years. And then his new foster carers decided to 'retire' and send him on (only they were lying, and took on a new kid just as soon as he'd gone, and he found out). And then the new new carer said, "well, it's just that he seems to have an issue with separation from me." Well duh. "He's a difficult boy." Or maybe, he was just born evil. Born evil. Are you one or the other, or can you be a bit of both? Are you either all right or all wrong? Are you either deserving or undeserving? And how do you know? And how do you judge? And how do you sit in your dulcet tones, so certain? Is it really quite so simple? Is it really? Or is it just that the only other explanation is as unthinkable as being given black plastic bags and told to load your life into them? April 2010


Reconfiguration The launch. 1pm sharp. All employees to attend. It is at least, a walk across the park in sunshine. A park I haven't walked across for twenty years, at least (you wouldn't think I worked here...). Then, my grandmother would have worn her grey coat and red hat. She would have been thinking about bus times and I would have been thinking about lunch. Gone are the days of teas and coffees at the entrance. Gone the biscuits; and the days of Danish pastries are but a distant memory. Austere times ('credit crunch' is so 2008; when there's an election to be won, you can expect terminology upgrades: now we say, 'financial crisis'). Look at Greece, everyone comments. And we blame the Euro, not the banks. And gone are the stadium launches. No grand entrance for this reconfiguration's announcement (oh yes, I've seen a few). No suited staff. No long, plushly carpeted corridors with the occasional peek across the pitch. No car park: now we have to walk to learn our fate. Which is nothing to do with cutbacks and everything to do with carbon emissions, they tell us. And employee health. You see, they care about our health, they say. Hence the no tea, the no coffee, the no biscuits. At the door they hand out water. "About the election," one of them says, "my advice is not to worry about it." Spoken like a true executive. He shines upon the wall computer generated video: the camera flies through space age corridors. Private finance, baby. "This could win a design award!" he declares, and we note later the stain across his pants. Oh yes, and kids will learn stuff there. Hopefully. Is now an appropriate moment to mention the rise in exclusions? Are space age schools only for space age children?


"As I'm sure you will appreciate," we get told, "there will be no time for questions." Backs get patted. Metaphors get mixed. Wise people get misquoted (but not with their names). Applause is duly solicited. We get told once, twice, three times not to believe what we read in the Gazette (I resolve to buy one that very evening). And then, the show over, we take our water, emerge into the sun, walk back to our battery office, discuss synonyms for 'bollocks'. So much for unity, although the chatter connects us firmly (I suspect the irony can be seen from space). But it was, at least, a walk across the park. In sunshine. And more. At the old department store, I catch a glimpse of my grandmother, packing gloves into a clip shut handbag. She fades, but she remains. This day, once it's gone, will be gone from my memory forever. May 2010


Kill it Then kill it, baby. Put it down. Murder it. Smoother that bastard when it's not looking. Whisper sweet things in its ear and then knife it. Savagely. Show no mercy. Show no remorse. Drown it. Slaughter it. Wring its little neck. Or wear it down, piece by piece, slither by slither, until it has no breath left to touch you, until it is weak, gasping for life, crawling across your bedroom floor. Put your heel on its head and crush it. Kill it, baby. And tell me all the details of its gruesome, miserable death. I want to hear it all, even the bits where it fights back. Even the bits where it takes you unawares, knocks you down, leaves you feeling hopeless and alone. Because you won't be alone, you'll have me at the side of the ring and I will bathe your forehead and I will kiss your cheek and I will tell that shit that its death is coming. If I could get in there with you, I'd kick that thing until it could bleed no more. Kill it, baby. Do it as quickly or as slowly as you need to. But kill it. 59

Kill it. Don't - don't you dare let it kill you. June 2010


Dream It occurred to me that you are, in fact, a dream. You come to me at night, when all is still and calm. You whisper images of impossible complexity, put my day in order, reassure me that things are just the way they should be, love me, challenge me where I need to be challenged, agree with the things that have never been agreed before. You are. You think. You listen. We meet in sunlit places, dance the same dance - side to side - and I am always wearing the same grey jacket. The details are both blurred and prickly; you are never quite the same, but when you ask me what's changed, I am not entirely certain. I see only you. Only you. And then the birds are singing, and I am waking to an empty room. A single message touches my last few sleepy thoughts. And so my day begins. June 2010


Message to the Fédération Internationale de Football Association, for a goal is just a goal and enough of this (senryū) For God's sake install the ref line side monitor and be done with it. June 2010


For the little girl is coming For the little girl is coming, and she brings with her the hope. The woodchip shall be scraped from the walls at last, the shelves shall be removed, the raw plugs painted over in white. For white is maybe. Maybe yet this room will breathe once more. For the little girl is coming, and she brings with her the hope. And the MFI desk shall slide down the stairs on its side and come to stand in front of the garage door that still squeaks, that still wobbles when you check if it's shut. It will slide past the banisters stripped down when gloss was no longer the fashion (but we never got around to the staining). Another piece of the past gliding by, like a six by four print floating under the concrete bridge at the bottom of Allbrook, where I used to stand and ask the unanswerable questions. For the little girl is coming, and she brings with her the hope. And the cupboard under the bed shall be emptied, the mattress will be removed and the doors propped open, and I shall be called upon to sort once more. Old photographs shall be discarded, rescued, debated and then discarded again. And rescued once I'm gone. And the letters box will be strategically ignored; for therein lie the memories which really do merit preservation, except I'm not yet ready to lift that lid. The space shall be created and it shall be filled with all the new crap queued up patiently. For the little girl is coming, and she brings with her the hope. And the bold sign above the door shall be removed, for that boldness is 63

now forgotten. The backing card shall be added to the recycle pile, and so shall the reams of continuous stationary, and I shall not be able to resist tearing off that strip of sprocket holes and letting them cascade to the floor one last time, like a paper chain on Epiphany. And I shall look to the corner of the room and remember the little black box that fed the paper; the cassette recorder, the black and white TV, the waiting, the working it out. The success that was measured in kilobytes. FOR N shall equal 1 TO 20 STEP 1: PRINT "Huck, once, was here." NEXT N. For the little girl is coming, and she brings with her the hope. For two nights, this room will breathe once more, and maybe - just maybe - it will stir. Maybe its breath will penetrate the dividing wall and reach the neighbour's dreaming, prise open the lid on motherhood. For the past exists, but not in boxes, not in paper, not in photographs rescued, not in the wallmounted speakers and their trailing cable, not in books, not in broken first year pottery, not in the black box or the table it used to stand on: all these things are just the dust taking the shape of things that are over and need to be pushed aside. It's time. For all are nothing in the presence of a nearby heartbeat which needs. For the little girl is coming, and she brings with her the hope. June 2010


Camborne This dark, dank place of wet granite, where the grime pervades, where the mist descends, where the smoke sticks to your skin and the alcohol to your breath, where the conversation circles endlessly like scavengers, where real is real (and everything else is just pretend)... ...could be bathed in sunshine and heat, and I would still feel cold and damp. For there is no longer any warmth to be felt without you. July 2010


Why I should always sleep on stuff 4:45am I wil send a letter. It will spill my anger. It will be tight. It will induce guilt. It will make things better somehow. 4:50am I will send a letter. It will show I'm wronged. It will show I tried. It will show I needed. It will clear my name somehow. 4:55am I will send a letter. It will sneer at choice. It will show my hardness. It will shut the door. It will close my heart somehow. 8:30am I will send a letter. It will say, "I'm sorry". August 2010


Moth It is all about the beauty of the flame until closeness catches the moth. Until it starts to sink into the liquid wax. It beats it wings, it tries to return to the air; it looks up at the light as the orange pool closes, thickly, over its head and the heat consumes its body. The wick burns. The wax lowers. Slowly, its body starts to break apart. Tiny pieces float towards the centre. The moth is brown, frozen in heat, still stuck in its last moment, still longing, still looking up at the flame to which its dance belonged. Later, it starts to burn. Its body pops and sizzles and blackens as the flame crawls over; a tiny wisp of smoke escapes. It is all about the consumption of the fire. And the dance is gone, and the moth is matter. August 2010


Interregnum Our pupae, are they touching? Are we looking at each other, inside the cocoon? That place, that 'institution'; through the haze of how many cigarettes have we examined the fittings? But, have we? Have we? Will the torch beam just pass? Will the motes caught dancing be all that gets seen. Dust. Just dust. Will we do as we are told, follow the rules, collapse, with a sigh of what everyone will call 'inevitability'? August 2010


Deep breaths Light up. Inhale. Blow the smoke into the night. Take a mouthful down of coffee and say, "Look." Say, "Listen." Say, "This is how it seems to me..." Pause for thought. Pause for emphasis. Pick a word. Like "This," or "We," or "When," or "If." Try to find the metaphor that works. Try to find the picture that is seen. Inhale. Exhale. Tap the ash. Change position. Lean forward to show determination. Lean back to show concurrent resignation. Inhale. Exhale. Say, "I understand that," or "Of course," or "Naturally," or "Yes." Pause for thought. Pause for emphasis. Pick a word. Pick, 69

"But..." Inhale. Exhale. Tap the ash. Take a mouthful down of coffee and say, "Well..." Say, "Because..." Say, "It's funny you should say that since..." Avoid the past. Avoid the anger. Count to ten. Inhale. Inhale. Exhale. Count to ten. Try again. Say, "I know." Say, "I have." Say, "I was." Say, "I am." Avoid defence. Avoid attack. Rub your temples. Rub your cheeks. Inhale. Exhale. Inhale. Exhale. Crush it out. Change position. Lean forward to communicate it does matter. Lean back to hear the contents of the chatter. 70

Light up. Inhale. Blow the smoke into the night. Take a mouthful down of coffee and say, "Look." September 2010


To Tyler To Tyler, now you are the latest face, the latest iteration of the movement that wrinkles up the noses of those who just don't see, who just don't feel it. You left your wallet on the walkway; your name, your numbers, your face-front-no-smile pictures and you dragged your weight over the railing and let it pull you into the Hudson. You left behind just the bits that everyone else has, the 'Official You', the You that hides whatever it is you really were, whatever it was you really wanted. To Tyler, you pressed the final button because, suddenly, you got seen, ripped open, broadcast. People laughed at you. And you buckled under the shame. But you were only loving. You were only living. To Tyler, You were only being beautiful. The problem is that no-one tells us this is who we are. This is who we have a right to be. Instead, we paint the world in numbers like those you left behind on George Washington Bridge.


To her, I say thank you. Thank you for taking away my shame. Thank you for letting me touch you. Thank you for letting me fuck you. Thank you for letting me kiss your cunt and for taking my come in your mouth and for saying to me, "Baby, "it's okay. "We are human. "This is what we're meant to do." To Tyler, I only wish you'd known you had nothing to be ashamed of. October 2010


Ex-lovers' vows Grief; yes. Analysis; of course. But the Escher path says only, "It is. It is. Just accept it. "Or don't. It's up to you. Be warned, though: bitterness and regret never once turned back time. Except to eat up memories, turn them foul; belch them back in your face, distorted." So here is my pledge. Here are the promises I will try to keep, however hard it may be. I. I will not say or do things that make you feel bad or guilty. I will not weep in public. I will not spout vengeful poetry. Sympathy, solicited, does not heal. Guilt resurrects nothing. I will try to reflect, rather than ruminate. You do not deserve to be hurt. II. I will not trawl back through previous conversations, quote your words, question your consistency. Your feelings now require no justification. They are as they are, and that is all that they can be. If I do look back, I will try to do so in fondness only. We were good. For a while, we got it right. I will take pleasure in recalling a thing done well. III. I will avoid making sweeping generalisations from us to my world at large. You are not responsible for anything outside of you and I. My past loves 74

are my past loves. I will not be passive-aggressive. I will not put you into a box and label it with a number, shelve you in the newest slot in the entrance to my house. I will celebrate the memory of us. I will add you to the flavours of my life. IV. I will never regret the knowing of you, the loving of you. You have enriched me; you have made me more complete. You are part of me now, for the rest of my time. And I am glad of that. These are my vows. In return, permit me those odd moments when I recall the touch of skin on skin and think of what might have been. Permit me to keep on loving you for as long as the need is there. October 2010


Two truths The really revolutionary revolution is to be achieved, not in the external world, but in the souls and flesh of human beings. --Aldous Huxley I do not doubt how it would have felt in your shoes, to look upon my distraction ideas, more ideas; problems of a non-problematic nature (when you get down to it); not bleeding; not brutality - and think, "No. I will not. He will not understand." For my part, I can tell you I would probably not have given what you needed. The past is the past, but it lives on, weaving its dance between us, moving in step with the beating of our thoughts. We talk. We open like flowers looking down, seeing the soil around our roots, feeling for the truth with our toes. The two truths - and those of the onlookers - tangle and untangle, and straighten, and weave. In the end, there is only the future and the glimpse of freedom from thoughts as well-trodden as the passage of the air in our lungs. Yes, the old future is gone; but the soul stands up, and the flesh marches forward. October 2010


Did you poison it? My brother and I could be out of the car and have the trailer disconnected in under thirty seconds flat. Dad couldn't reverse with the trailer, you see. So, when he took a wrong turning down some narrow little street (it was always the narrow little streets that were where the wrong turnings got made), the call would be issued and we'd be required to spring into action. It was one of our holiday responsibilities. We used to remain in an almost permanent state of readiness back there, each of us listening to our personal stereos. It might have looked like we were tuned out from the world, but we each of us knew the call could come at any moment. We were like a little emergency service; firemen waiting with their boots up; Spitfire pilots sunbathing on a deck chair upon grass.


Every Christmas, the shops around his school ran out of Jaffa Cakes. The reason for this was that, every Christmas, he would dress up as Father Christmas for the lower school and tell the children he was fed up with being left mince pies every year. As a matter of fact, he told them, I much prefer Jaffa Cakes. I remember wondering why on Earth he'd chosen Jaffa Cakes. It wasn't as though he had a particular thing for Jaffa Cakes. He wasn't what you would call a 'Jaffa Cake Man'. Sometimes, I decide it was simply the first thought that came into his mind. Perhaps he was looking at something orange at the time. My favourite theory, though, is that he just liked saying it. I mean, who doesn't like saying 'Jaffa Cakes'?


My father wouldn't swear, he'd say, “God, Strewth!” “God, Strewth!” when he was in a hurry. “God, Strewth!” when he couldn't get a shelf to stay up. “God Strewth!” when he once tried to reverse with the trailer on and ended up driving across a big flower bed. I say 'strewth'; it might, in fact, have been 'struth'. 'Struth' doesn't look right as a word, I know, but I have this itch in the back of my mind that's saying, “Struth. Struth. It was definitely struth.” Perhaps what he was actually saying, was, “God's truth.” That would make sense. Only it wouldn't, because why would you say, “God's truth” when you drove through someone's flower bed? My brother and I used to call him, 'The Admiral' for his clarity and presence of mind under stressful situations.


Now, when we open up the record cabinet, there are hundreds and hundreds of cassette tapes stacked up inside. Green tapes, orange tapes, blue tapes. He used to record us at Christmas. He used to record the radio at Christmas. Sometimes, he used to record the TV (he'd put the cassette recorder on the floor in front of it). Hidden amongst the bog-standard, flip-open-like-a-plastic-book cases are these odd, hinged at one corner affairs that swing open like a gate. I never saw tape cases like that before. They remind me of Lamborghini doors. I like the idea that, once upon a time, someone decided the cassette case could be improved upon. But the world wasn't ready for the Lamborghini case. It got forgotten like the Salter's Duck. Hundreds and hundreds of tapes, stacked up between the vertical divides like Tetris pieces. Carols from Westminster on one. A two-year-old tantrum on the next. We have no idea what to do with them.


“Nyssa!” he calls from the back door, shaking the munchies packet. “Din-dins!” A high E and a C sharp, repeated. By the end of the sixth or seventh rattle, the cat is usually galloping across the garden towards him. Yes, cats can gallop. I like making models. My cat likes destroying my models. I put my models in difficult-for-a-cat-to-reach places and when she's sitting on my bed in the evening, washing her belly, she sometimes looks up at one of them, all of a sudden, as if a fly just flew past her nose but also as if she's evaluating, as if she's thinking to herself, that might work... I'm working on my computer, and from the bathroom at the end of the landing I hear a squeak. She's hunter-crouched, poised at the blocks, ready for the gun. Most importantly of all, she's waiting for my attention. I look at her. She looks at me. She looks at the model of an Apache helicopter hanging from the middle of the ceiling. I look at the model of an Apache helicopter hanging from the middle of the ceiling. I look back at her. She looks back at me. The gallop. The jump: bed, windowsill, rebound off the curtained window. The outstretched paw. The precision swipe. The fall of the chopper to the ground like Podovsky's Mi-24 at the end of Rambo II. It is over in an instant. He shakes the munchies into her bowl. She rubs against his leg, back arched, purring. His life ended because of an insect bite on his ankle. I suppose it could have been one of her fleas.


And then there's Rupert Bear. I won't attempt to list the merchandise. Suffice to say, the top shelf has not been touched. The 'shrine', as people call it, remains in the state that he left it. It isn't really a shrine. It's just where the miscellany got stashed. It's a red herring. It wasn't about the mugs, the calendars, the knitted toys, the scarves. It was always about the books. They're all lined up along the bottom of the bureau in the hall, a collection passed by the knees of every visitor. There must be thirty or forty of them – one a year for decades. They stretch back to his past, like a coloured, cardboard ladder.


“Cup of tea, love?” he'd ask. “Yes please.” she'd say, from the settee. He'd bring it in a mug – in the latter years, the blue one. And usually something on a plate to go with it. Now that I think about it, sometimes it was Jaffa cakes, three or four of them, resting on each other like collapsed dominoes. “Did you poison it?” she would ask him. “No, love,” he'd reply. October 2010


Out It is unclear, this plagiarised proposal; this rewritten treaty. The differences are subtle; the timing is everything. Out, it is undeniably formed upon a brand new understanding. But. I do not know. I do not know. I dreamt about taking pictures in a concrete city, empty of everything except angles. I followed what looked like exits into smaller and smaller places. In the final room, where I could only crouch, I turned to see the door sealed silently, permanently, behind me. November 2010



Old friend, learn to look behind you in the coffee queue  

Selected poems (2008 - 2010) by Second Life® writer, Huckleberry H. Hax

Old friend, learn to look behind you in the coffee queue  

Selected poems (2008 - 2010) by Second Life® writer, Huckleberry H. Hax