There was no sun. The news was full of theories about what had happened but there were no facts, just wild speculation. The government told people not to panic but most of the cabinet had gone missing, so that didn’t help. All we were left with was the thick, dark void that hung above our heads, offering more questions than answers.
The moon and stars had vanished as well, but it was the hideous absence of a benevolent star that panicked people the most.
I’ve had lots of time to read poetry books, so here are a few I have enjoyed recently that I would recommend:
These are poems that feel necessary for this current moment in time as so many of us rebuild our selves and our society. The sequence is a healing one, moving from grief and despair to hope as the narrator reconstructs herself. But it’s not an immediate, straightforward healing, it’s a gradual piecing together of a new self from disparate fragments:
every part of you that’s rotten
every part of you...
Taken from listings for The Lanes in Bristol: In Stereo magazine, May 2020
When the earth was correcting
our cabled bodies were sprawled
irreparable, most sensory inputs
disconnected, transmissions down,
smashed by careless hands wielding
boulders. When networks were down,
when communities were rewiring
like dust scattered in sunbeams,
We stayed immobile in deserts,
newly separate and confused
listening to automated number
stations, comfort in the night.
Looking through my drafts recently, I realised this one was never posted. Pascal Vine was asking for prompts a while back, so I gave them the prompt “All we listened to was...
CW: Body harm
Drowned in newspaper and glue,
I have forgotten my real face.
I have been here before, I know.
Not just this town square, but this
same moment, repeated endlessly.
Versions of myself concatenate.
Routes taken become smudges
around the square. Termina
is quiet today. Everyone bracing.
I’m too late, the sky too close.
I almost fall into the orbit
of that hideous moon. I can see
each tooth, each blood vessel
popping from yellow eyes. My time
is squandered again. I stand firm
Do you remember the first time
you saw those mountains? How they
towered above you? Do you remember
your unbounded freedom, how paths
lay before you, infinite in choice,
how the sun spun above you and grass
regrew at your feet? How you would play
your strange instrument to bring forth
new light upon the surface of Hyrule?
Now, you have become an adult, changing
within seconds, your childhood abandoned.
You do not remember when you grew so tall,
when the clouds gathered, the sky darkened,
Don’t climb up those ancient stone steps
carved into the slope of our tallest mountain
up to that egg that sits on the summit,
the size of a temple. You don’t need
to draw those eight strange instruments
or watch them hover in the air before you
to play a melody you always knew, no
hands strumming strings, no breath over
the reeds. You could simply stay here.
Isn’t it better to remain safe within
the dreaming, even if it is not your own?
Don’t you want to leave the...
Hello, here is where you can find me elsewhere on the internet:
Taken from listings for the End of the Road festival in Bristol In Stereo magazine, March 2020
After yesterday’s post, I happened to be reading The People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn. He writes about the reaction to the protests about Columbus statues in the nineties:
This aroused anger among defenders of the old history, who derided what they called a movement for “political correctness” and “multiculturalism”. They resented the critical treatment of Western expansion and imperialism, which they considered an attack on Western civilisation.
The more things change, the more they stay the same.
Every country is deluded in how they narrate the past. No history is complete and each history is a story shaped to make the narrators feel better. But I think here in Britain, we are more deluded than most.
Taken from Crack magazine, March 2020 s
From her vantage point of the second highest branch, Cassie saw it first, growing over the horizon like a bruise. She often spent afternoons by herself in the garden, away from the noise of the house- The music pounding from her brother Jamie’s closed door, Sampson barking at nothing, the rumbling of the ancient boiler. Her parents constantly screaming at each other. Or worse, being polite through gritted teeth. Cassie preferred the relative silence of the garden. Birds might chirrup at each other, but it never sounded angry. For most of the Easter holidays, she had got into the habit...
Taken from a review of Angel Olsen in Bristol In Stereo March edition
Good morning to this Zinnia and this Zinnia only