Smoke Circles

There is a different place inside my bones,
The walls are the same but I can’t call them
Home because home is not made of brick and
Stone, it’s made of love and love has grown


Out of herself, took a gun to her scalp and
Belted out a final farewell, the lament of the
Century, the creation of wishing wells, and
Profit, I think I could’ve stopped it if I had


Known bigger words as a littler person,
Maybe if immersion hadn’t meant making
Friends but feeling the earth and feeling the
End would probably have hurt but hurt weighs


Out worth and worth spins the Earth, that’s what
My grandfather told me while he smoked his pipe
No one knew how soon he’d die, the plumes of
Wisdom clogging his lungs, he couldn’t breathe


And I am done losing people who matter, call
Me crazy, call me the hatter, I’d wear his hats
With pride and laughter should be the semblance
Of war, not violence and gore and my little brother


Was just born with tiny limbs and a mighty roar,
Silenced forever with a surgeon’s knife, mistakes
Are human and the mistake was mine.


Road Blocks

I said yes, my heart in my chest and as
The tires flew along pavements grey I
Thought of all the ways the wheels could
Fall off, STOP. The sign is clear but when I’m


Near you everything is magnetised and I am
Mesmerised by the hope you plant in me,
Happy is part of my vocabulary, laughter is
Part of my scenery, my best friends found


Some jealously because she can see you’re
Taking pieces of me and that makes me afraid,
It makes her afraid, that the jigsaw blocks might
Not fit together the way they were laid before,
In my casket, I haven’t visited since you walked


Into my gaze, peripherally it shouldn’t make sense
This maze is dangerous and new but I walk it with
You, holding hands. I like holding your hand. I
Never thought someone would hold my hand, my


Life is a rubber band prone to exploding in my face
You have faith when darkness is my friend, I’ve
Already discussed the end with a martyr and he
Told me for all the pain, I have some stretch left
In this lane. We won’t crash but if we do I’d like
To imagine you’ll be holding my hand


To the free spirit, I am sorry,
You dance through life and
Laughter falls easily on your
Lips, my lips are caked with

Blood, the dried laughter of
My soul, I am spiteful to you
Pirate man, you see the same
Islands in people I do but you

Are unafraid to moor, and I have
Clipped words and uninviting tones,
I do not allow strangers into my home,
These structures are weak and you brim

With joy, I am afraid of you and your
Happiness but more than this, you are
A reflection of who I could have been
Should circumstances and circumference

Mean the same thing, you sing outside in
The realm of life, I’m sorry I ever brandished
My knife for if I die in the last crescendo of
Bird song, I just ask you at least keep the
Magic alive for kindred spirits to recognise
There is much more depth to life than lies.


I made a list of all the things I
Want to do before I die, because
Mortality is just a social construct
And we’re just waves in a never ending
Ocean, devoting the hours to walking the
Lines and feeling rebellious when we don’t.
I made a list starting with skydiving because
Fuck gravity. That’s why. I’m hurtling reasons

At the sun daring it to sear my wings and start
A fire only my heart and soul can rival, I wrote
‘skipping stones and skipping out’ because
Concentration should only be allowed in small
Amounts and if we were able to float freely with
Mind and thought I’m convinced we would be
Better people, I climbed church steeples to shout
At God, asking him if he is ready for my arrival,

To have the red carpet glossed with flowers and
Wine, and a screen to show my life line caught in
The hands of time, feeble and calculated, I burned
Pictures to free spirits and donated every morsel I
Had, starving people need more than food and
Imagination is in short supply these days, my mind
A hamster wheel stuck on auto pilot I drink myself
Senseless and allow serenity to catch my unusual high

Before the fall, the dulcet tones of a telephone and the
Call that marks the beginning of my time upstairs, playing
In old children’s rooms recreating stop motions of the
Past where Barbie’s shoe size and Action Man’s heroics
Were the only things that mattered, and stuffed animals
Had voices and individuality before they were locked in
Plastic bags the terrible end to Toy Story they never
Really explained, before the weights were tied around

My ankles and I sit here, under the slipping moonlight
With a blank canvas and a single 50 cents pen writing
Down a list of things to do before I die because this whole
Concept of, being alive, doesn’t fit in my hamster wheel anymore.


Dear Me

Dear me, you’re learning things
About yourself. You wear hiking
Boots through rivers and count
Stars instead of sheep. You’ve
realised individuality is


Wrapped in paper sat in a box, bow
Tied and name in cursive on the front,
Your box is a little worse for wear but
At least its worn, like the unofficial
Uniform of life, you strive in sun


Which is ironic because winter has
Always been you’re favourite season
But maybe the fireplace was simply
A surrogate for the pace of productivity
All along, you’ve admitted you can be


Wrong. Now there’s no going back
You slide your feet through sand and
Attempt back-flips, drive North instead of
East and forget to eat, you wear sunglasses
At drive through spaces so no one can see


Your face, like the open book it always
Was, cause for alarm that the world might
Catch you and toss you like a paperweight
Your box the bait for insults and slander
The blander words falling from tongues


So, I end with one solitary request
That you never let that box go, tie the
Ribbons to your wrist, shake away the sticks
And stones, show the world you have the bones
To take its weight, and keeping dancing on your way


I wish someone had told me
when my mother would hold me
minutes after birth that the umbilical
cord of life was wrapped around my
throat, no matter how much time I

devote to greatness, I will always be
reeled back, blood on my hands,
dragged through the sands, kicking
and screaming reenacting my arrival
with a bigger departure, nurture and

nature only leads to disaster, earthquakes
my knees shake and vulnerability means
skin rubbed raw, harsh and burning the
chainsaw has picked pieces of my soul,
mine is old and frail, locked in an internal

jail my therapist tells me I’m too hard on
my self, reaching for the top shelf when the
cord holds me back, destiny laughs and
I resist the urge to smear my script, I am
Not the protagonist, or antagonist, I’m

At risk as my character cries out in the dark
With an oncoming train and the promise
Of an end, because after all, there is no

Restart. Not to life.

Paranoia and Fear

The earth flies behind my feet
Heartbeat, beating fast, too
Fast, I’m the last one left in
This trial, jaws at my heels all
The while I run I feel their breath
On my neck, looking over my

Shoulder I check for shadows
Amongst light but the sun left
A long time ago, frost bitten
Branches catching my clothes,
They are close, pupils like planets
Scanning these lands, shaking hands

Scaling rotting bark, alone and helpless
In the dark, their footsteps echoing in
These woods, dangerously, I should
Keep pace and abandon shelter,
Darting directly into their path,
Red eyes and wicked smiles ask

My soul for surrender and quickly
Round these hundred miles into eternity
There is no escape for me, they are
Machines and are unafraid of endless
Games, lame and wounded I carry on,
Listening to the dulcet tones, songs

Of crushing fear, tears stream down
Rivers nearby and I fall into the battering
Waves, struggling for power there is
No one to blame for the weakness of
These brittle bones, they lift me high
And take me home, fingers asphyxiated

Around my throat, rising terrible notes
Screech through the silence, I am
Blinded by the undeniable clear picture
They are here, at banks edge, waiting
To sink their claws in again, I dive to the
Bottom and plead for an end but their

Holds are too strong, and bring me back
To where I belong, under attack by the
Demons with no face, and for now, we