These are not my grandmother’s mushroomstheir blotched white skins mottled in the grass,a hand tucked beneath the umbrella meat,bone handled fish knife soft to the stems.These are a different kettle of spores altogether,ruffed collar about a shortened stumplips pursed on top of each other,sour sucked expression rolled in on waves.Extravagant, and no good to anyonethese are the dangerous sort. This afternoon has been a delight of migraines, so I’m having a quick go at tonight’s poetics prompt and then turning in for the evening. I used to go picking mushrooms with my grandmother quite a bit, but I can’t remember why we stopped… I think they just stopped growing quite as much in the fields around her house.
The size of a lemon,which reminds me of a fruit tree,miniature,leaves buttered up and greenas the unripe citruses berried in-between…and this is much the same,this slow uncurling as you ripenmy own belly thickening till I peeloff my layers,test the softness around my middle,squeeze the fruit flesh.You feel all this apparently,spin like a top, end over endbecome a flicker in a whirlwind. Still hidden by your smallness,little lemon pip blooming. I’ve missed quite a few DVersePoets night over the past couple of months, and that’s mainly been because I’ve spent all my free time napping. The little Gremlin above is due this summer, and I’ve had all the fun of pregnancy sickness to content with, so my writing took a bit of a hit. My husband and I are very excited to welcome our little human into the world, and I thought what better way to tell my poet friends the news, than with a poem for the Open Link Night!
News cycle filters through the pictures again,muted buzz of static from the back of the setperched high above an empty bar,upturned stools kicked up like drunk legs. Cigarette burnt low he flicks the butt wide,watches it sail, scatter ash, splutter in the sink,tap drip, dripping in that constant aching mannerof fists drumming against windows caving in. Could comment on the old school tactics,another plague, a new spin on the old classic.Some times the old tricks do work best,even if they stop short of razing it all to dust. Tonight we are being challenged to write War Poetry, which immediately brings back memories of studying Wilfred Owen’s Selected Poems for A Level English Lit. However, war is something that always seems to exist somewhere at any point in history, and all too often conflict is much closer than we would like to believe.
Roll my shoulders,crackle spine of dry fleshsmoked fractures and boiler hiss,hiccup of breath in a radiator. Airless and unloved,in the dank basement of the mindsnow cannot refract any lightinto these shadows. Still it aches on the backs,eyeballs tight against their socketsstraining past the crisp,no bounce in the world outside. Imagine melting into dust,slithers of self pooling at the footof all this make believe.As endless as this frozen season. “Airless and unloved, in the dank basement of the mind” L. Igloria ~ A Reparation
They bought the house new, especially to avoid these sorts of things.There is nothing behind the wall, except a space where the wind whistles, and it always whistles. Even on still days, when the plastic windmills in the neighbour’s garden don’t clatter, and Gregory Mutt’s union jack is slummed around its flagpole, the wind whistles!‘I don’t quite understand what you want?’ the contractor explained. ‘There’s nothing to explain where a draught would be getting in, and we’ve checked all your external walls.’‘Listen though!’ Jenny hauled him through the kitchen by the front of his shirt, pressed her face to the lilac paint. ‘It’s whistling now!’The contractor stared at her, wide eyed, and a little sweaty.‘Aye,’ he croaked, ‘I hear it.’She yanked him closer.‘You will,’ she said, quiet now. ‘You will be the one to make it stop.’ It’s the end of a long day and I still have words to write for NaNoWriMo, but I’m taking a little break to pop over to the dVersePub and see what delights they have in store for tonight’s …
Exhausted, your prostate yourself,legs aloft and crooked,chin tilted towards some ceiling corneras if to suggest you were focusedon anything but us.Still,you follow footsteps with a beady eye,wriggle your spine against tile,happiness thumping in rapid, swishing beats. As Lillian shared a lovely doggy snap with us tonight, I thought I’d include a sketch I did last month. I’m currently 9,000 words deep in NaNoWriMo, but when I’m not writing I have a go at improving my drawing skills, which mainly involves many hours of looking, sketching, going ‘well that’s shit”, erasing and trying again.
Today is the ten year anniversary of Writing and Works. That’s right, I’ve been mad enough to continue blogging for ten years. I started this site so that I would have somewhere to share my writing, and hopefully reach people who would want to read it. Since then, the site has changed and morphed slightly. During my first year blogging, I didn’t post any poems, but now poetry is the biggest feature of this site. I rarely write ‘my life’ posts these days, and most my fiction gets tucked away or submitted elsewhere. However, I went back to that very first post this morning, and though my style has evolved over the years, the core of what I was saying still resonates with me. So as I sit with pen in hand I see almost everything. It’s not the world I visit though, the one supposedly occupied by you and I, but the great expanses of kingdoms and domains that unfurl within imagination. My home is wandering among ideas and capturing in words what I …
I’ll start at the toes,short,and not quite in jointwith one another. Pause around the ankles.Suckle themlike gobstoppersto the marrow. Crunch shin and calf,ravish thighstill the fat glistensalong my jawbone. Pick the pelvis clean,pop each ovarybetween thumband forefinger. Still juicy and ripe. Pull intestines,lungs, liver, heart,kidneys free.Mince into a pie. Portion each breastout with the cutsto ensure a moistcook. Lick the remains cleanfrom each finger.Grind the bonesbetween my teeth. Leave one hand for eyeballs,seasoned tonguetastes a lot like ox,ears more like bacon. At the end,begin again. With Halloween just a couple of days away, I thought I’d share one of the more monstrous poems from my poetry collection, ‘It’s All In The Blood’ which sounds like a much darker collection when associated with this poem on its own.
I should have taken that course,the one with the guywho builds drystone walls up northfor the farmers who have to maintainthings the way they’ve always been.A bit like how I’m still tryingto keep this how it waswhen you laid each slab in placeone, against the other,so clever with your fingers,finding the flattest stones,the edges most like jigsaw pieces,and stacking the piletill it looked like a skyscrapereven if it always was only a folly. I’ve just taken part in Caroline Bird’s Brave Writing poetry workshop, so I was a little worried I’d be all poet’d out by the time I got round to the DVerse prompt for this evening. It was an amazing workshop and I feel like a got so much out of it, much as I did with the workshop I did last year run by Mark Pajak. Workshops are a great way to improve your poems and your craft. Also, my poem When Medusa Goes Shopping went live on The Daily Drunk today! I think this is the first poem I’ve had published …
Squirming at the pumpkin guts, your hands scooped into ladles, spooning palmfuls of seed and sludge. We took desert spoons to the wisp remains. Raked the slick walls smooth. Marked out the features with sharpies, a wide outline mouth, hollow eyes, skeleton nose. Sawed kitchen knives through thick sick, fingers squeaking tight on the handles. This year, that kitchen is someone else’s, and the plants have not spat out anything other than flowers, their yellow blooms autumn mulched into the borders. There is no spilling through the doorway, hat and coats rain kissed into my open arms. No mud footprints on the tiles. Only seeds, sat on the shelf, kept dark and safe, for more hospitable times. My own roots deepening, on the promises pushed away till Spring. Evening has a weight,a sense of things settling down,comfort in closing.