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DISCLAIMER TRISTAN MOSS

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DISCLAIMER



TRISTAN MOSS



Belfast LAPWING


First Published by Lapwing Publications c/o 1, Ballysillan Drive Belfast BT14 8HQ lapwing.poetry@ntlworld.com http://www.freewebs.com/lapwingpoetry/ Copyright © Tristan Moss 2012 ‘Windmills’ Cover Image Copyright © Felix Mercer Moss 2012 All rights reserved The author has asserted her/his right under Section 77 of the Copyright, Design and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this work. British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data. A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library. Since before 1632 The Greig sept of the MacGregor Clan Has been printing and binding books

Lapwing Publications are printed at Kestrel Print 028 90 319211 E:kestrelprint@btconnect.com Hand-bound in Belfast at the Winepress Set in Aldine 721 BT

ISBN 978-1-909252-05-9

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CONTENTS

Disclaimer . . . . . . . . . . . Driving in the Dark . . . Magnification . . . . . . . . . Knowing Love . . . . . . . . Uneven Couplets . . . . . . Paths . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Ghost Ships . . . . . . . . . . Thieves . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Hitting the Wrong Key . Parting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Two Old Friends . . . . . Differences . . . . . . . . . . . Two Versions . . . . . . . . . Orphan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Broken Statues . . . . . . . . Vicissitude . . . . . . . . . . . Sight . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The Worm . . . . . . . . . . . Lines . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nostalgia . . . . . . . . . . . . . Retro . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The Pensioner . . . . . . . . Light’s Smell . . . . . . . . . Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30


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DISCLAIMER

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To my father and my wonderful daughter, who will never meet except in my thoughts.

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Tristan Moss

Disclaimer

the views expressed are those of a lover partner colleague employee father son competitor student teacher brother friend‌ and do not necessarily reflect my own

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Driving in the Dark

That night you were not the shooting star, the moonlit lake or the glowing windows above which chimneys smoked. No, you were the rabbit that ran out in front of my car causing me to brake; and there you stayed, frozen, staring at me for a second or two, as if to say, even when I throw myself in front of you, still you try to swerve and avoid me. Then you were gone.

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Tristan Moss

Magnification

You were once a part of something so broken that when we separated you seemed a fragment - rough and jagged. Now when I see you, you are smaller but as smooth as a pebble.

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Knowing Love

I saw a stranger on the pavement. We tried to avoid each other’s path, but as we sidestepped, our feet seemed caught in a clumsy, leadless dance, which drew us closer with every step. Now, in the house, we step around one another with consummate ease.

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Tristan Moss

Uneven Couplets

the summer we let the grass grow until too long to mow was not the summer we looked for more and small things began to gnaw. was not the summer we ceased to care and had affair after affair. was not the summer we chose to ignore things that would’ve split us for sure. the summer we let the grass grow until too long to mow was the summer we were unaware we’d never be that perfect pair.

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Paths

slippery patch of ice she walks over it he walks around it

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Tristan Moss

Ghost Ships

She no longer slams doors. Instead, with a nonchalant touch she sets them adrift creaking towards their close.

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Thieves

When we were burgled, we hid and argued about whose cds, books and furniture were being stolen. We heard them going through every room yet not ours. They knew we were there, as we knew they were there a kind of awkward deal had been struck. Eventually, we dared to leave our room and saw that those two thieves had left us with nothing.

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Tristan Moss

Hitting the Wrong Key

What constitutes a typo? Should the wrong letters be close on the keyboard to those intended? Or when the word’s all mixed up must it be a perfect anagram of what was meant? What type of errors turn I’ll always love you into I’ll move out?

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Parting

the dry patch where your car was disappears

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Tristan Moss

Two Old Friends

winter and summer seldom meet but when they do they argue terribly when I am with one I find myself being autumn and when with the other I am spring

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Differences

the tea in my broad-rimmed cup soon goes cold yours continues to steam

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Tristan Moss

Two Versions

he read the book she saw the movie they discussed their differences he argued the book was better as it didn’t over-simplify and resisted reducing its characters’ problems to clichés she argued the film was better as its character’s problems were clear and not masked by ambiguities and so they continued to argue about a film he’d never seen and a book she’d never read

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Orphan

after we adopted him I watched his restless sleep on his bedside table was a cactus often I wanted to water it but seldom did

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Tristan Moss

Broken Statues

to stand on the bare pedestals of an ancient temple I imagine ‌ my mother holding up a hand to her ear while staring at a hairline my father’s muscular outstretched arms trying to convince without any fingers my proud brother with no ears or nose my alabaster wife with no arms a friend with no head or genitals and last of all, myself, with a full quiver but no bow.

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Vicissitude

part of me’s one of those picturesque villages that’s stayed the same for strangers who have no interest in nearby places that had to change

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Tristan Moss

Sight

holding a butterfly in my hands I peek in from one side while letting light in from the other and the more I see the freer it becomes

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The Worm

Half its body moves leaving the other behind. If its direction is right what can now be called its back catches up but if not, what may have been its front wrinkles back to where it was.

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Tristan Moss

Lines

a queue of people their shadows falling on one another

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Nostalgia

between the blades of an old mower tangled grass grows

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Tristan Moss

Retro

the speed camera’s sign is that of an old camera. this is clearly a lie. does the image of an old camera carry more weight in the mind’s eye? or when travelling at speed is it easier to distinguish? or are old things more indicative of what they are than new? whatever the reason i too encourage people to notice me and take note of those who speed on by.

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The Pensioner

he told me he preferred his house with its drafts and fires that burn all day rooms that in the dark still contain the crisp night air and in the lazy summer months windows and doors wide open letting in insects that bite and sting and with a cat that keeps the mice at bay but never quite gets rid of them

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Tristan Moss

Light’s Smell

just before the small dimly lit church closes a priest goes round locking the shutters and putting out the candles as he does so the candles’ smell intensifies until it’s all that remains

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Writing

Sorry, this poem isn’t in to take your call at present. But if you’d like to leave a few words or even some sort of a message, it might get back to you later.

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L A P W I N G PUB L I C A T I O N S

TRISTAN MOSS

Tristan Moss lives with his partner and two young children in Sheffield, where he works as an English language teacher. He can be contacted at tristanmoss@hotmail.co.uk

Illustration on front cover by Felix Mercer Moss.

The Lapwing is a bird, in Irish lore - so it has been written indicative of hope. Printed by Kestrel Print Hand-bound at the Winepress, Ireland

ISBN 978-1-909252-05-9 ÂŁ10.00


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