Has the time passed when we | will have forgotten this?

Coal dust and roses

Intimate eye, no more truthful | than any other | except | in that it is our eye, this | intimacy: it is | our kiss…

Coal dust and Jack Frost

No, no: my kiss | A thief’s share, always | Then barrels of traffic, blunder and clouds | round and round | five more days | of commuter life… | My kiss, not ours, I take it | in a sack thrown over my shoulder | across rooftops at night | tip-toe and teeter, trot and slide | on clinking tiles | fear like a cat’s eyes glowing | in a sudden shaft of moonlight…

Jack Frost: where are his footsteps?

Burning dry flowers on a fire | in the same grate over time has gathered | the ashes of ledgers | faggots of cherry, oak | peel of satsumas | and slight | satsuma pips | spat through smoky air | lissom with glisten

Why the tears? So smoky in here

How can I put this?

Portents and foreboding

Where can we put this?

Charms, chimes, gleams, games

Where did the wind come from? | blows a vapour of cataracts | from the silenced willows? | The river’s | rifle doesn’t fire | I get so confused | by saints and skaters

An overpowering scent of cold woodsmoke | in mornings cracked from slumber | and a hoar cocoon

Has the time come | for us to forget this?

Thompkins’ barn a black mass | gorgeous | theatre where spiders weave their cobweb ruffs, a spiteful | tractor rusts but did it move? | Did it?

Intimate, belonging only to us, a jewel | locked in boxes of moments and inches | how much | theft is left in us?

Coal dust and boots

November boy, that matters, skews the seasons round a jot | blends the humours | add a pinch of solitude | like an airy yeast | snow | inters Jackson’s ditch | we grow caught up | in the sea’s | transactions with the moon | a life | littered with hidden, personal things

Boots, and fire tongs, and coal dust

And your heart? Will it?

Withered flowers not fresh with giving

Grieving | and the Laceys’ girl born stillborn | the Carpenters’ girl | born premature

Has the time come

when we will remember this?


from the series hypergrammar (open-ended, 2012–present)