My poetry has been widely published and anthologised and has won prizes in many different competitions. I'm currently working on a collection that combines my poetry and images, as well as two collaborations: with the artist Hinke Schreuders, and the musician and sound artist Pier Bernardi.
from behind your book of shapes
If a fire got in
that would be it whoosh
and I nodded abstractedly
not thinking it through
the patient touch paper
the incendiary itch
the virgin tongue that licks
along the heartlines on each palm
through an undefended edge
the blood orange bristle of indoor fire
my fingers burning holes in everything
the bone dry roses of that bouquet
that bunch of old pursed mouths
in a tangerine flash
the tendons in their carping throats
turned sparks that fountain up
to singe the cooling skin of last night’s moon
rain down to feed a fire that eats
the parquet floor for breakfast
blows open doors with a BOOMBOOMBOOM
makes every window sing a cracked tune
houses without chimneys
should not huff and puff
fetches us out of our little cold stoves
to fill us with a roman candle rush
that boils my blood like jubilee jam
and I am
in love with the act of making fire
my cape of smoke
this newborn burn
Published in the Aesthetica Creative Writing Annual 2018
A taste of you slipped into me
like moonlight in a locked church.
The flesh at first left me cold:
respectful fingers, diffident lips
spilling awkward mumbles in
The Angel’s fug. We hunted down
politeness with iced vodka
and flew outside, where the night
took your tongue and gave it to mine,
igniting a flame that swallowed
Soho’s oxygen whole to shape
the way I kissed you back:
adoration of seventeen again,
ablaze with the lost conviction
that this can be a state of grace,
this immaculate need to fuck in the street.
Poem of the Week, The Missing Slate, 22 July 2014. Published in the Aesthetica Annual 2017.
Micro found poem, 'Dirt Sprite', exhibited at the world's first ever Instragram poetry exhibition
‘And do you think people are talking
about you on the TV?’ I croak ‘No’,
throat stripped by the grey snake they sent
down to suck the deathwish out of me.
He could be a newsreader, this ironic doctor
shielded by a desk; frost moustache aligned
with postbox mouth. Red when shut,
black when open. Reflecting my spectrum.
A gnarled part of me wants to ram
something too big in that black hole
and watch it fill with red. But more of me
is carried on Valium contrails, ghosted out
against a veil of dead stars that still shine.
‘And do you think the washing machine
is a spaceship?’ I wish I did think that.
I think I could be one myself –
a metal vessel spun across the universe,
burning up on this re-entry.
Published in the 2015 Templar anthology
In the dark months the sea shows its hand,
dumping stones as big as cannonballs
at the doors of The Trafalgar.
Inside, a fibreglass Viking guards the flat screen TV
and Ida Kelly leads a sing-song on her squeezebox –
a gift from the last accordion factory in France.
Less than half your blood belongs here.
Past and future run through you
like blurred words in seaside rock.
Every August you drown in carnival crowds
that disperse at dusk, leaving you stood
before a Punch & Judy stall on the beach.
Looking out past its candy-stripe curtains,
you watch the fins of a basking shark glide by,
pointing towards other bodies of land.
One of 72 Commonwealth nation poems to feature in BBC Radio's Poetry Postcards project
The phone cord turns slick in my
fingers as your words surge through –
Hire a car and get to Liverpool now
and inside an hour I’m eating the M6
in a Vauxhall Cavalier, fuelled
by the salty promise of you served raw
on fresh sheets. I run laughing
past reception, my head full of
the girl from Clapham, my tongue
already pulling mussels from a shell.
In the Wirral, cut-glass lunchers hiss:
Look! They’re having two bottles of wine.
We laugh ourselves dizzy,
screeching like foxes over the cobbles,
Cavalier it to Cardiff for the Squeeze gig –
Jules Holland blasting the keys,
right arm in plaster up the elbow.
Tonsils trashed, we’re slippery as fish
with mosh pit sweat – our hearts
knocking down walls to be together,
our minds wiped sunshine white.
At five a.m. we wake the night porter,
get him on side with a ten quid bribe,
fling ourselves into bed to the clink of
a milk float – the riff of our tilted fairyland.
Damp twenties stuck to my back, room
full of rum fumes and luscious smoke –
your Park Drive spirals licking my
Silk Cut curls. You tell my hip bones
tall stories while I sing Another Nail
in my Heart, lit up with the thought
of twenty four hours more to drink
the place dry, fuck each other numb,
dance around the question Is that love?
Published in Magma, Issue 58