I’ve Forgotten How to Sleep

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I am jealous of

lazy, sleeping men who take

the “standard” time to

 

Fall asleep in now

rather than blink endlessly

as the dawn prepares

 

I have containers

of salt, grit, cold metal dust

behind my eye-caps

 

I gaze slightly blind

around the soft chill of room

one, or none with sounds

 

Trickling throughout

streets ahead and beyond me

cities flying past

 

The Year Pt. II

So fast forward three months
see me sprawled,
alone
clothes in piles like grubby religious offerings

The harsh grey morning
heaving its way in
past ten o’clock

My mouth open,
bottle and glass
still sitting on the side
9 hours later

Crumpled receipts and coins
one boot still on foot
noone else in the room, or the house

The faint smell of burnt hair
when I reached to open the window, late
forgetting the candle was lit

When with a rude shock,
the bouquet of dying flowers
lost its balance
fell hard and loud from table to floor

1am Petal scraps
slowly becoming dust
in the stale days that follow

Yet I’m still asleep
hair over face
frowning in my mottled dreams

Whilst a beer bottle downstairs
dribbles the last of its contents
and rolls under the sofa

The Year Pt. I

That morning
after a late one,
laughing and falling back asleep
or one is asleep
the other just holding her
watching light flicker on the wall

Neither knows what time it is
both know it doesn’t matter
there’s no time
with you
half-asleep

Last night faded faraway
and you in my
arms here,
the white sheets and me
cradling you asleep
fingers softly on
the pillow

A phone buzzes
but there’s nothing
outside of this room,
nothing
to take you away from me, now

Nothing but time

Night Folds

only the sticky night tonight
waits for someone up before dawn
straining eyes
she pours milk in the dark
the stars blink above
so she looks with open palms
now that the glass has been finished
the piano lies dormant
deep, deep in the black
inside her bedroom
her hands fold
over a perfect leaf

You, Me, Next Week

Below me, beyond clouds
a four-day morning
we’ll sleep
and we will wake

Those hours, I’ll be humming
my toes on the edge
the blanket
the mist out the window

Your profile
a Roman myth
soft as you hand me the mug
smile like a grey, soft sky

To open and breathe
black, hot, bitter
the music pours out like wine
and you,

You
resonate on my tongue.

The Jarrah Table



At night I don’t hear the whales anymore

they used to sing, and float
magnificent,
translucent
around the foot of my bed

or around the caves in my head

so I could always sleep
in the truth of home.

Tap the piano keys. Bang them,
place your entire palms on the rectangular ivory fingers
and crash, explode your feelings out

in a glorious, cathartic drone

Please, bring me back
to the steady 5 o’clock days
where my father’s thoughts
echoed in notes

around the shadows in our house
and in the shadows hiding,
content

under the solid Jarrah table.

I rejoice in a group
of four knitted souls
brought together by candles
and a meal

I now think of three,
and it makes my face crumple

Like the paper I threw away
every time I tried
to write myself
a letter.
So now, now that I am more
than a mere crescent moon

but less than full

it’s all I can do, some evenings,
to pick up the prettiest autumn leaves

and hold them tender
in my two pockets,
clutching also

to a postcard from Paris in the 60’s

whilst

The apple crumble topping, sits,
pleasantly, in that constant site of destruction

reminding me of ovens, your hugs
Hermione the cat

and the thick, magnanimous
grape vine
wrapping its arms around us

every day of the year.