Poetry

Sorting Hat

A name is simply a thing to be called. It doesn’t define you. Doesn’t own you. Doesn’t always fit. If you want, you can hide behind it. Be just a name, a name with no face. Be a mask, a separator of lives. One name for a close relationship, another for those that are distant. Barely associates. A name can change over time. It isn’t a static thing, once decided, there forever. It is fluid, changing as often, or little, as you like.

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Poetry

We craft our portraits

Out of old exercise books

Cinema tickets, favourite books

Receipts,  flyers, posters

and dog-eared photos taken with wind up cameras

Knowing that no matter how many

Parts we add,

We can never get close to

Who we really are.

Poetry

Sugar Coated

Behind that sweet exterior,

painted, crafted, structured:

a persona loud and clear.

 

I can see you.

See how your eyes do not reflect your

bright-red grin,

see how your long sleeves lift

to reveal silver filigree

around your wrists.

 

But whenever anyone asks

how you are,

you tell them you couldn’t be more fulfilled.

Everyone’s social media blares out their happiness –

so you have to keep up,

don’t you?

Poetry

Spilt milk

I’ve seen many artists make portraits from coffee foam.

Shaping, contouring, scraping.

Letting the natural colour show underneath all that froth.

But what happens if the cup is spilt

and the liquid runs down the tablecloth

in a race to escape its confines?

Will it travel separately, several long tracks dispersing from everything they were before

yet leaving their mark on the cotton,

or will it pool together again to build up the image once more,

refined, certain, bold

to stand out

against the plain colour of its background?

Poetry

Rolling chances

How do you weave a web

if you don’t have a corner to claim as your own?

 

How do you spin the spindle

if there is no wheel or thread to be found?

 

How do you sing a note

when your voice is too worn to be heard?

 

And when do you have a chance

to raise your hand

when the forest is already crowded?

Poetry

Patchwork

It’s said that every seven years,

our bodies change.

We shed who we were and take on new thread

to spin into a suit of current experiences

and timid goals.

 

We can’t lose our previous selves completely.

 

At a deep, stubborn level,

our essence never morphs.

It lies in wait

gathering parts it likes

and casting aside those it doesn’t,

so that eventually, when the time comes

to accept our truest nature,

we can be as comfortable in our own skin

as we were before the influence of others took hold.

 

We are a patchwork of our lives,

well worn in places,

freshly pressed in others

and often oddly put together.

 

But we are human.

We are flawed.

And that’s what makes us.