Poetry

Age Rings

My age is shown in armoured plates,

shells coating my body. Each one no thicker

than a single hair and full of patch jobs

from nicks and scrapes I’ve received

clawing my way here through thorned words,

cactus remarks, daggers thrown at me with a single look.

Sometimes, not even I can remember who I am underneath,

and I know I would feel naked if I stripped them back.

But that lemon juice you offer is so fresh.

Poetry

Masked Musketeer

The mask you always wore

now hangs up on the wall, collecting

dust in the gaps of its fine sequins and folds of silken cloth,

its paint chipped and framework cracked.

It’s an antique, a reminder of what was before

you allowed your real face to be seen.

 

Emotion now plays in your eyes and the swell of your cheeks,

tears long held back allowed to escape, caught and crystalised

to look within them and see the cause unclouded.

The uncertainty of allowing yourself to be loved,

to have someone willing to see all of you

and not give a damn about anyone else’s opinion of you,

for you are you and that is who they wish to spend time with.

 

The mask need never be worn again.

Poetry

Skin deep

I have seen

your self-inflicted shackles, each bead endowed with the power

to restrict a part of your personality

so that the true you can never break free.

Worn for so long that they’ve merged with your skin

and faded so only those with a trained eye

can see them for what they are.

 

I couldn’t see them,

but over time you allowed me to notice.

Over time, you let slip what they really are.

And since that moment of understanding,

I’ve wanted nothing more than to ease them off you,

not forcefully –

I don’t want to break the skin and wound you

like those before have,

without thought, without purpose

other than a few laughs

that I know still cut through you

even though they are nothing,

and you are everything.

 

I want you to emerge fully

to stand by my side,

to always be here to hold on

to the light, to never feel the need

to bury yourself once more.

Poetry

Bleed

In order to know someone,

bleeding yourself out into a cup

and letting them drink it down

is sometimes the only way.

It lets them taste the salt in your wounds

and the nectar in your view

of the intricacies of life,

spinning and turning

through every step you’ve taken

to reach this point.

Let them see your shackles, your restraints,

and trust them

when even if they say they don’t have the power to break them,

they can still aid you

as you rid them yourself.

It may take decades, aeons,

a million fractals of your stitched and glued and re-stitched heart,

but they’ll be there through all of it.

Just give them opportunity to take that first sip.

Poetry

Mirror Pool

The tea in my cup is a mirror pool,

a pensive place of comfort

to gather my thoughts at the end of the day.

 

Why is it so hard to show passion?

To have dreams that are bursting from your body

invisible to everyone but you

and those select few

you trust and take into your heart,

who have no expectations

because they simply enjoy you

being you.

 

Why is it necessary

to fight the urge to fall into those few,

even though they’d catch you without hesitation,

and you’d easily do the same for them?

To see the look that says they will

hold you

if you need it, at any time,

and still not dive?

 

Why is love so difficult to express

in front of others,

to hold hands, touch nose to nose,

have that same solid certainty in our eyes?

None of the passers by care;

half

haven’t even noticed.

But there’s still this poisonous awkwardness

lingering in my bones.

 

I gather my thoughts at the end of the day,

reflecting in a pensive place of comfort:

the mirror pool in my teacup.

Poetry

Society

Sometimes I’m amazed at how kind complete strangers can be, even if it’s just a simple gesture – stopping to let me cross the road at a busy time.

Occasionally, it makes me forget that just because I can’t always see the shade, doesn’t mean it isn’t there.

Crash. The day is hazed as it all leaks back to the forefront again. An article about the state of animals transported abroad.

It makes me choke. So much cruelty. So much ignorance. So much death.

Enter news of wars and children killed in a mass of explosions all because grown-ups can’t shake hands.

Tidal waves within me, and I feel powerless and angry.

Yet despite all this, the great hive still buzzes. Even for me, hiding that data in code for the sake of living.

Poetry

Overflow

I’ll hold up the spoon to feed you

letting the syrup spill over the sides

to fountain down to the spoon below

catching and spilling, catching and spilling

a movement, motion, continual flowing

but the nectar will reach you in the end

it can only be controlled so many times

before it makes its escape and delivers to you

the hope that you dared wish be allowed free

Poetry

That wobbling seed

I can hold your hand. I’m always here for you.

Yes, in your hour

of need

 

I’ll be watching

I’ll be waving

I’ll be waiting.

 

Let me take your hand, you know I’m here

always. For you.

That’s

 

the problem,┬áisn’t it?

You do know

it’s me

 

niggling

niggling

niggling

 

in your mind, casting those shadows

around you. Wait.

 

You think

I should be ashamed?

 

I’d say I’m rather proud of what I do.

You’d just take happiness

for granted

 

if I wasn’t here.