it transpires that telling your GP you are concerned with your ephemerality will not accomplish a great deal. there is no prescription currently available to cure such fears and any decent psych would be too much of the same mind to help. moreover the doctor’s surgery only exacerbates the problem, after all – in what […]
It perches there, ripe and globular; knitted together from the pinks of the world, orbiting its own red roundness like a planet collapsing; […]
His hellos like snow in the desert like gulping air after five years under. Him saying your name like first summer rain like sunset orange like tumblers in a lock like you might be his.
Under 17 days of ash, Robert Landsburg rises and wipes dust from his backpack. Unwraps his camera; unwinds film from its casing. He’s up on shaking legs; begins to click the shutter release, as the cloud of black and heat recedes, and the air shrieks. He stands and watches as the mountain implodes.
Just sort of floating. Letting everything become a carousel. It comes in waves. It runs to the moon of the wiretrap nervous system and nudges you into a black hole. […]
secrets are sticky rice packages tied with coarse string. they sit in red stomachs swallowed in black pulsing lungs under a yellow gravestone.
The man’s crippled dog sat silently, it was white. The man was writing, the paper was white. The man’s face was sorrowful, his face was white. The ink spilled, the paper was still white. The clouds overhead floated, they were white. A plane soared over, its belly was white. The ink is soaking in the […]
mama, remember your cool hand on mine. remember, I was twelve and consumed with thinness. remember you lay beside me on the starchy sheets and talked about healing. about your own mother, how you became a kite, straining away from her. about the summer your hair knotted up like moss in the shower drain. mama, […]
that on the last day of july my father would tell the story of how they had met so young in photos i once saw of an eighties blurred with rain and home haircuts how easily she had made her impression and left it there that years later he […]
My book of Blake slid unnoticed into the tracks. As the train skidded in, I climbed on, unaware. Later, as my fingers rooted for it, too sick of watching The landscape blur stickily by, I noted my loss. I pressed my forehead against the lukewarm pane, and thought. Thought of the pages slicked back with […]
In 1927, the Chinese Civil War broke out between the Nationalists and Communists. Peasants joined the fight, not knowing nor caring which side they fought on. They often joined the army for the meals. Many perished, trying to escape starvation. the last hen died / fourteen days ago / while you puffed your chest / for faceless […]
this can’t be real. the air is pink, and all the birds have migrated. when my mouth breaks the surface of the water i kiss the ripples, taste chlorine, remember salt. shake off the dream like water droplets. we drive to the beach. i’ve never been in the same place twice: the earth doesn’t stay […]
Tonight, I’m dreaming of the crucifix. Jazz plays in the background and trumpets weep. Someone shouts the swan is drowning over the sound of someone crying. I remember singing myself awake in my cot, boys on bicycles strumming guitars outside my window. I was a deaf Juliet, making words to you […]
I’ve watched the layers of water between your shrivelled fingers how you peel them back prunes against sheets of paper one by one until the seal of the swimming pool’s been broken until you’re able to make it wide enough for you to investigate stroke its underside tickle its belly you’ve suspended everything I can’t […]
The words we lost sit in the beaches and mountains and often get caught up in fishing nets like rounded starfish that stick to your hands like Velcro their legs embedded in the palm of your hand. I’m sure there was a word for that, but not anymore. Or words caught in the city between […]
“That is the trouble: we are in two worlds, and it is probably hardly possible for you in yours to picture mine.” – John Jarmain. You arrived this morning, packed into a bent envelope, once folded to attention. The blue lines crawl about the margins, looking for ways out and today […]
Leningrad, mother-city, I return to you in the dark with lungs swollen, breaths incapable, your streets no longer skin immaculate as ice. I remember your cold northern nights like the back of my left hand, how I chronicled your alleyways in days I spent waiting for my son in snow that wanted to smother me. […]
In the market, fire-flowers bloomed from gun-metal seeds and dazzled the streets into submission as Papa called us back into the house. I remember catching his brittle smile while he wrapped us in his hands and told us everything would stay the same. When the red-arm-bands swept past along the roads, you said that they […]
None of us had left our home country before None of us knew we were going to war (The boat, the boat I’m going to be sick) A country called France full of curious stares Not used to brown skin and turbaned black hair (Eyes forward, eyes forward Don’t look) We left towns behind for […]
I do swear that I will be faithful She holds my shoulders at arm’s length: Polished boots, hot khaki and She pins on a flower and tells me not To forget. A flame red against my chest. and bear true allegiance I can’t seem to get warm. Cold metal In my arms and ice in […]
somewhere a son, a lover, a gun (all these three combined in one an unholy trinity) falls beneath the sun. all the world stops. the soldiers still. a final breath and then a chill: how terribly simple it is to kill. embraced by silence, taken to the shade. a man undone, a man unmade coins […]
to have and to hold from this day forward dawn breaks and somewhere a radio goes static as wedding bells ring. the white noise of our cathedral […]
1 I’m in the kitchen stripping courgettes for a salad. How could I not be thinking about sex, now that the basil plant on the windowsill has given up its last gasp of chlorophyll & Hounds of Love is on the record player & I bought the only two courgettes in the shop? 2 Courgettes […]
And love grows angel in the gloam with your calls through resistant stars. I turn and it is fall and memory vivifies a sick man-child’s calling back in darkness to the dark, to split: the dark flashes like red ants in hot oil, but, as now, fades quickly into irises under the lids of […]
The time has arrived again to attend to my bite, now that my bark is perfected. Time to attend to my toothstones, chisels, choppers, nippers, laughing gear, my string of pearls, my wolfish incisors, molars, mashers, porcelain shelves, “a newer Sèvres pleases, old ones crack”. • Three teeth, he says, holding up three fingers. […]
for Meena Keshwar-Kamal Almond-mouth, even the crumbs in your pockets are dank with elsewhere: kulche badami, flour pale like a breast in your Amaa’s kitchen bowl, ivy masturbating its way up the masjid’s unapproachable clefts, and yes, this is how they drag you into the market filled with dogs salivating for a half-mast. How is […]
Gerry Wells has published his poetry, fiction and non-fiction in a wide range of periodicals, and has also broadcast on BBC radio programmes. In 2009 he published a memoir via The History Press. His latest work is Kicking the Hornet’s Nest, a book of short stories published in 2012.