Reading at Platform in April

 

Jings – I’m officially ‘on the bill’ for April 7th. For a wee spot only, I hasten to add. Still, I’d better work out which poems I’m going to offer!

You have been warned…

(where’s that wobbly nerves emoji…?)

More details here…


Time is

A wee oddity written in response to a ‘reading in both directions’ prompt. It seemed appropriate to post this week.

R.I.P. Professor Stephen Hawking, 8 January 1942 – 14 March 2018.

Time is

sweet
    eternity makes a fine Dundee cake,
      and
        everything that exists at any moment
          is
            one single sampled quantum of fruit
            Buddhists say time is an illusion,
            although
                we learn how to tell time
                time always tells on us
            although
            Buddhists say time is an illusion,
            one ticky fruity nugget tasted
          is
        everything everywhere now
      and
    eternity makes a fine Dundee cake,
precious
.

Time is

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ticky: a little piece (Dundonian)


Osmosis

Un-mortar my walls.
Crumble brittle stone grit
to honest sand.
Dissolve me through skin,
whispering to skin.
Your skin.
Your warmth.

A story place made real,
substance shimmering
like mirage challenged light,
crazed to uncertain travel,
tear steps evaporated,
one world’s rumour,
diffused in another.

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Echo at DCA

AECD0E19-2AE6-435A-8722-B62A16615DEFBy sheer coincidence more than any sort of planning I’m reading with two fellow Wyvern poets at DCA’s ‘Echo’ event next Thursday. The Echo events are visitors’ responses to exhibitions at DCA.

The Echo will be at DCA on Thursday 8th February at 6 o’clock. It’s free, but you do need to order tickets in advance.

More here

 

 


un-touched

In the tradition of something a little scary near Christmas…

Christmas fright

un-touched

Sometimes it seems my existence falters, my
touch fails on phones or pads or screens, is it
only aridity, or am I momentarily – gone?

Once upon a good laugh, the world paused,
after we smiled unflinching through another
late staked old un-scary tv movie.

It can’t be easy to be a Dracula Lee so
terminally camera shy always the mirror’s absentee,
a suavely dangerous kind of unkind quantum ghost.

Back then, after vanishing spot and a long sharp tone,
analogue static shushed the speckled shades of night –
no more stars to steer by, straight on ’til morning.

Washing afterwards, it usually began as a pull,
rapidly suppressed, a twitch tap touch somewhere between
the spine and one shivered shoulder blade.

Knowing nothing’s there, but following that compulsion
to take a rapid confirming rear-view glance –
how ridiculous, to have to check.

Doubt hangs somewhere in the looking, not behind,
but returning to the mirror, from face rinsed hands,
fearing an unseen absence reflected there.

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On the wall

With plenty of help from exhibition organiser Tansy Lee Moir, my projection/montage/video piece was safely installed at St Margaret’s House in Edinburgh last night. My piece is based around readings of three short poems from Drawing Breath.

The Grown together exhibition opens on Saturday November 11th.  The exhibition (seen in preparation below) shows a marvellous and very varied collection of tree inspired artwork. Chuffed to be in the company of so many fine artists.

 

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Ting-a-ling-a-ling

This poem was written after reading an article in New Scientist recently. The article shone a light on current thinking about human brain transplantation.

As the magazine’s leader suggested, whatever we might think about some of the ideas discussed, it is important that they are talked about. Scrutiny matters.

The title of the poem refers to a
World War I airman’s song:

The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling / For you but not for me:
For me the angels sing-a-ling-a-ling / They’ve got the goods for me.
Oh! Death, where is thy sting-a-ling-a-ling? / Oh! Grave, thy victory?
The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling / For you but not for me.

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Ting-a-ling-a-ling

The man who would transplant
a human head, or properly,
exchange a human frame,
Frankenstein or Doctor Strange?
He talks his plan, so far so good,
and sure, well, perhaps, maybe?
Until chillier air keens a chime,
whispering the unsafe word,
                                                      immortality.

An itinerary reminder bings aloud,
it’s Monday, almost midday,
whether my head is there or absentee,
in two minutes the Bute in test
will scream alarm like a scorched banshee.
And in my arms a little twitch,
fingers flicker startle ready,
fumbling set to save my ears – fair warning
                                                      for you and for me.
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