The Drawer

There is a beautiful life
in this drawer somewhere,
I put it away in here when you left.

I rummage for a glint of it,
pull out your birthday, anniversary,
condolence cards to me.

I put my whole arm in the draw
and feel for that beautiful life
I put away when you left.

Ah! Perhaps this is it. It has the texture of beauty, I pull it out, but no. It is only a stunning frayed recollection of you.

You always said
Or was it me
Men can never find stuff.
They never pick stuff up
or move it.
Perhaps this is why
you left.

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The Scryer of Wombwell (August 1467)

I have committed heresy
Scrying the place of stolen goods
Through this crystal stone
And thus burn these pages
In repudiation.

I must lead procession in churches
York, Rotherham, Doncaster, Barnsley
Wearing these paper notices ‘Behold
the Soothsayer’, ‘Invoker of Spirits’.

Invoker of Christ and the angels
From these burning pages

Through this virginal twelve year old boy
who holds an engraved crystal stone.

A crystal engraved with the secret
Names of God a sacred clear stone
That takes our questions to angels
who answer our earthly enquiries.

I said to the angels ‘Saye me trewe,
chylde, what man, what woman,
or what childe hase stolne yis thing,
and shewe me thyng in his hand’

Books are rare but must burn
Only permitted words allowed
They have been lenient.
I could have burned as these pages.

My name is William Byg, or Lech
Of Wombwell and the year fourteen sixty seven. The lords
Of Wombwell are happy with their recovered goods.

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The Invisible Town Commercial Register (Updated Regularly)

Fish & Chip Shop places your bets. 2 to 1 Haddock. 3 to 1 Cod. Accumulator includes a bag of scraps.

Hairdressers do not dress your hair. They cut and blow extraneous parts of your life. Declutter you with head massage.

Estate Agents is a butchers, sells accessible sausages, secluded pies, spacious legs of Lamb, picturesque Chicken.

Card shop is a bakers. Inhale fresh baked birthday wishes, admire Hen night buns, Stag night fairy cakes, seeded get well

Indian Takeaway is a flower shop: Chapatti Roses, Naan bread Daffodils, Pot plant Samosas, Jalfrezi garden ornaments.

Key & Shoe Repair is a library & Media Centre: Headlines reheeled, Twitter Yale keyed, Facebook resouled, books polished.

The Butchers is a swimming pool. The water tenderises your flesh. With this tender you can buy groceries.  Swim with knives.

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The Gust


Gust says ‘ I can make hills jump,

and seas hills, I can make you suffer.’

You’re a bully’ says the quiet earth.

Gust says ‘I belong.’ then disappears.
Soil shouts ‘Who to?’
‘ I belong here.’ to Gust already gone

Gust returns lifts soil to another place.

Gust tumbled through the grass blades
‘I’ll spoil your hairdo.’,
‘Spread my seeds’ replied grass
‘I can always redo my hair later.’

Gust to rock ‘I will wear you down. I swear.’
and promptly forgot what it said.

Gust returned with grit in its teeth
unaware of what it had said.

Gust blew dead leaves into a blazing swirl.
‘I can make you live again’ it said.
No reply,

but a rustle from leaves on the tree above.

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The Abundance

Brought abundance for the winter
Down from Summer’s high warmth
Abundance stored as welcome wealth
Rests ready for the darkening

Brought from hedgerows, woods
abundance of wild damsons, sloes,
rosehips, elderberries, blackberries,
hawthorn berries, nutmeg, cinnamon
Fruit is the seed carrier.

What is this ghost of a leaf?
Where is the pattern it makes?
How does the pattern of a leaf
Become a ghost of its tree?

It is the season of the open door.
It is the reason of half day of light
It is the reason of half day of dark
We stand between days, colder

On that eve of halves
When we go disguised
From old ghosts, new ghosts
Cold door to warm door
In hope of gifts and a smile.

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The Hollower

What is that moment
When life has left?
How does that glint
In their eyes disappear?

When does flesh
In the held hand become cold?

Make hollower the hollow house
Pack her delicate ornaments
Treasured trinkets in three
Cardboard boxes: Rubbish, Keep, Charity.

Keeps are bubble wrapped, newspaper parcelled

Rubbished tin cans, fridge food, perishables

Charity clothes, some unworn, still packaged in plastic

It was not in the just after midnight
Quiet bungaloed street
It was not the alarming mobile ring
Rushed answer
It was news my sister died

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Autumn Stroll On

Cheapskate jewellers inlaid caught raindrops set them with garnet and ruby placed their gleam in window trays: Diamond

Golden leafed pot pouri lines road and path mulches in downpour. Smell wet forest on the street.

Woman: ‘Bus is a horse and cart. Knocking us to and fro.’ As it made way up Packhorse Road down which salt brought.

A crocodile of Canada geese across yellow glow clouds. Two parts of broken iron bath loaded in a van: goodbyes.

Blown remains of burnt out, abandoned leaves left by Summer’s joy riding trees eyesore streets. Evergreen constancy.

Town is vivid grey, but yellow shines out of closed pound shop, open butchers, grocers, mini market: Early risers.

Bus stop lad, snapback cap red American football shirt, ‘Billy’ tattooed neck, says ‘xbox3 fixed by hairdryer. Sorted’

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