driven (under the influence)

Feels like oncoming lanes, two blurs becoming one and the same, have reached their jaded apex. No systems of checks or balances remain. Yellow broken lines sway in their conviction.

Ridges and ravines are left to
over-compensate.

Twisted metal’s ephemeral
(though only winding roads relate).

This is our equation, an algebraic map,
variable destination while we drive off

a mountain path.

Attack velocity between downward trees
til we wrap around unlucky epicentres

and
burst into fucking flames.

verse of the canuck

here I sit
on imaginary lines
that say I own everything

north of what you own;

every crooked lake,
snow-drenched stone.

And the cold’s been
inside my bones,
accomplice in name
to storms that
we have
paved

the way for when summer grows
bored of
us,

and no
love’s lost in transition.

here I gaze out from the ports,
starboard dreams stored so
carelessly,

knowing south of me
lies undoing;

that’s
the fool in me thinking
this lunacy
belongs to
only
one.

the optics of anger

Volume III

Eye of my pride,

hazel
iris.

Empire of sight,
tireless kingdom.

Monochromatic
monarch,
dishonoured prince,

I wore the
crown,
and all prestige since
has fallen
short on jewels.

Fake
silverware and
heirloom swords compared,

few ideals left to
uphold but
fire,

flickers
of desire in focus,
their turncoat devotion
a symptom of
the blinded,

suddenly misguided
rather than
having known
dark
from
birth.

Eye of my pride,
centre of worth.

Dilated hate,
the horse to my
hearse,

beaten with
a stick
again
and
again
and
again.

Storybook horizons
anchored
by oranges
and reds
of something
someone penned
to point out
its flaws.

Eye of my pride
caught
in the jaws
of dread
the night dances
much too near
for comfort.

N.B. I had originally planned to release this piece about a week later than I am. However, the AoA series will keep rolling out in order. This simply marks the beginning of Volume 3, which will carry throughout 2016 and 2017.

Thank you for reading.

AoA: The Anatomy of Anger (2015)

Audio visual cortex
absolves
abhorrence.

Borderline smile,
the hazel face of a child;

all guile and guilt
adulthood spilled in her lap with
a wink and a laugh.

And should this
rash that starts as a series of
spots
devolve

(upon my chest until
every manufactured breath finds
its ambitions aligned with despots)

then my body’s
just a prop to
be bandaged when shot,
glued together
when dropped,
a constantly
rehabilitated plot of earth where
I’ll abscond as
ashes scatter.

Certain
molecular bonds
can never
be severed,
just as
some catalysts are not meant
to be mentored to become more
than a chain
reaction.

Neck from navel,
a radial fist,
breast to footstep,
each temperamental
cyst;

a trick on my senses I cannot quite kick.

Blisters to boils,
building character
and foils. Until
this toil succumbs to its age, I’m just

a symbol of
its sacrilege.

metaforth

press on,
quipped the stars.

stay put,
pleaded dusk,
there’s little that way but
the husks of another day.

sleep, said
the night,

surrender to your
sweet exhaustion.

hello, cooed
first light, I’ve been
waiting to help
fight your
darkness.

my heat beats down
heartlessly
but I’m louder than
your screams into
outer space,

so much
my voice
warms your face.

be strong, advised
the afternoon
for nightfall will
soon overtake

the minute hands,
and you will stand alone.

And the clocks move so slow
in younger hours,
but I will
return tomorrow with
a chance of showers;

a metaphor
of the power

I’ve lent you to
shine into the
midnights.

faultline art ( I dreamed a Celtic dream)

I dreamed a Celtic dream,
velvet sunsets
on the breaths
of mountains.

I dreamed of you and I,
when monologues became
cumbersome
and counted.

Nicks in the nightmare I
long compared to fair play,
for without pain there ain’t gain,
but why colour linoleum red
when it’s the
heart itself that
needs to
change?

Why give
up fluidity to become a fault
line,
its only
sense of compromise in
violent quakes?

We’ve lived so long
on rising stakes,
I dreamed a Celtic dream threatening
REM,

the end of us
versus them.

I dreamed a Celtic dream that said
it was time to stop
chasing a
phoenix,
capitalising on the dead.

I awoke today a
mountain to contend with.

AoA: The Exodus of Anger (2013)

“Exodus” was a beast unlike anything I had written before. Part self-reflection, part response to a post-9/11 world, it became one of my most read and shared posts, thanks to it being Freshly Pressed by WordPress in a matter of hours. It was the closest I’ve ever come to my poetry going viral, and will remain one of my favourite works long after I’ve eclipsed it.

The Exodus of Anger

My resolve is prone
to soften

before
a shotgun fires

bullet holes in the
doors of
desire.

Suddenly fear and
crumbling drywall
are the
only constants
this environment
offers.

(The frames that hung here are cracked and collapsed, the floors they guarded awash in glass- complete lapse in logic, bastard child of progress. The violence in every photograph shines.)

Behind white,
drawn blinds, I’m addicted to
obstructed sights.

Kiss of revolting
floors, shattered
windows,

oak dressers
rejecting
drawers.

Consequence ricochets between
the walls and their frames; the
earthquake you
left me in every
bone of my being is

still not enough
to break me.

Even the Richter scales stopped
keeping score.

The Ancestry of Anger (2011)

The Anthology of Anger didn’t start as a series containing some of my most hard-hitting poetry, either socially or politically. It didn’t begin as dissection of debilitating emotion, which has come to stretch across two volumes spanning nine poems. It began as a single poem, a thought captured in time.

From that first piece written back in 2011, AoA has touched on anger in eight other works, exploring racism, populist politics and its most common symptom: violence. Every single time I thought of adding to the anthology, I forced myself to ask if another piece would detract from the rest. Now, I know they are poems that essentially wrote themselves, and every one was necessary.

For the next nine to fourteen days, I will be revisiting this series, to finally see how they run together for the first time, culminating in the debut of Volume III shortly thereafter.

This is where it began.

Volume I

The Ancestry of Anger

I trace the ancestry of anger
its family tree

from roots in ruined soil
to amber branches;

angle pencils to
shade in leaves.

The canopy it casts
over dead grass
no weeds dare
mature upon.

Yet, if one walks along
adjacent creeks
they’ll hear a song of-
no,
sighs of relief

(for birds don’t chirp here
nor do critters burrow
or spiders creep).

It’s just this tree

that only evolves
upward
shares
bloodlines
with boredom

The botany of
resentment,
sentenced to
spend forever listening

to water
breaking free.

Karma Linguist

I trace the ancestry of anger
its family tree

from roots in ruined soil
to amber branches

angle pencils to
shade in leaves

The canopy it casts
over dead grass
no weeds dare
mature upon

Yet, if one walks along
adjacent creeks
they’ll hear a song of-
no,
sighs of relief

(for birds don’t chirp here
nor do critters burrow
or spiders creep)

it’s just this tree

that only evolves
upward
shares
bloodlines
with boredom

The botany of
resentment,
sentenced to
spend forever listening

to water
breaking free.

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viva la víctima

Say you won’t leave me yet, dear.

The night is long and I tend to
provoke
the shadows.

Gallows humour and fireflies
rumoured
to
haunt the
paid help
make me melt around the shins.

Days without a proper meal burnt
all my
empathetic words

and the
frills around your skirt
don’t hold hunger’s hands in
public.

Yeah, you’re
more than just
a number to me, dear;

say you won’t act on
bloodless coups
and help me
pour
crazy glue between
the cracks

that have been etched
in our backs like lewd graffiti,
3D representations
of ruined tact.

Say you’ll have my
backward ways until the day I
don’t want yours.

My affair with
victimhood,
cuddlefucking
sympathy.

See? I’m already getting bored.