Spotlight

my brother’s
pancreatic tumour
started to bleed
and that friend
i told you about
had a blood pressure of
seventy over twenty

holy shit
i say
even though
i am really tired
and had a shitty shift
and really just want
to go to bed

holy shit

and i think of the musicians
and the actors
and the models
and the influencers
talking about corona as if we are all gonna live like this forever
and their lives are over
because they thrive in the spotlights
and people don’t need them
when they are too busy
just surviving
and then i look at my workmate
and there is no spotlight
but despite the pancreatic cancer
and despite the deadly blood pressure
she is getting ready for a nightshift
at the care home
and i wonder
where her spotlight is
where the cameras are
and where the fans
are hiding

Dying Pixel Dust

i erase your existence
from my phone
by clicking
the trash icon
on each individual
image we took
not building a life
together
but memories
all the same

years worth
of history
destroyed
in seconds

i kiss
no one

look at
no one

love
no one

suffer for
no one

as i rewrite
my story

this time
i am
the leading lady
i always was
without you

as i watch
your smile
reduced
to dying
pixel
dust

Yesterday’s News

i dreamed of fire and smoke
standing in a disappearing room
eaten away by flames

the floors started giving away
when i saw you
slumped in a chair
dead as a doornail
apparently having
started it all

the sparks of destruction
still igniting
from your fingertips

i can feel my lungs
slowly fill with the dust
of what once was
as my throat
starts to burn
and it is then
i realise
there’s no point
in coughing
for i too
am already dead

Fire Starter

it was my father
who taught me
that love was not
unconditional

but that it had to be
earned
like everything else
in life

your father taught you
that you were
unlovable

that you needed
to man up
get a steady job
pay the bills
die quietly

no wave making
ripple effect
life

but you
my love

were always
meant to be
a fire starter

and this is why
you would always
leave
before you
even arrived

Pissing Blood

she pisses blood

i don’t feel so well
she said
her face is grey
her hair so greasy
as her eyes
turn inward
looking at what once was

where’s my husband

he died

she pisses blood

he died?

yes

i try to clean her up
but there’s a lot
and she can’t lay still
or won’t
i haven’t decided yet

you are butchering me
she says
sweat on my brow
trying to keep
her insides inside

i’m sorry
i say

and all she says is
she pisses blood

On the 11:08 to Rotterdam

i’m a plant today
with my head
pressed against
the window
eyes closed
soaking up
the october sun
while the girl in the seat
next to me
clings to her coffee
and stares at her
screen

i have this bad
habit
of looking at
the work of others

she’s writing
a thesis
about god knows what
and i think of myself
ten years ago
at art school
and wonder
if the boy
in front of us
ever showers