Hope’s on Speed Dial

I close my eyes and breathe
so I can breathe when my eyes are open,
and gulp down trees with water
three times a day with a clear-sky chaser.

I take off my boots before I go inside
and I don’t try and hide the places where it hurts,
not anymore.
You can read me in a morning.
No plot twists,
I swear.
I’m only 124 pages long.

I close my eyes and breathe
and repeat, ‘Here. Now. This.’
I picture the warrior, chin raised, eyes fixed.
I picture red, and gold explodes into mist.
I picture no picture and feel my own kiss.

I take off my armour before I go outside
and I don’t try and hide,
not anymore.
Metaphors aside, I don’t like arseholes and their dramas.
I don’t watch Jeremy Kyle or eat out of the bin.
Same thing really.
Hope stands in the doorway beckoning me in,
but I tell her, ‘I’ve got this.’
And she just smiles.


You exploded onto me.
The incriminating dye bomb in the bag of stolen money.
Vibrant, wild, permanent.

You wrote your name on me with a Sharpie.
And again with just your finger
And again with a desperate palm
And again with just your tongue.
And again and again and again.

You exploded onto me like a biro in a bag,
A squid in a vice,
Like a rogue tattoo gun.
Felt-tip pens left out in the sun.

You are henna
and beetroot
You are E123
And me? I am a kaeidoscope of you.
And you, my you ... my you.


if I lay on the shoreline
toes to the horizon
head to the promenade
and pulled the sea up over me like a quilted blanket
I would sleep
and dream
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