Passenger Pigeons

Matted and stygian feathers refuse to spread
in a sable surcoat of doom.
Bearing the emblems of ascendancy too soon;
How could our hubris have led
to such a portentous death?

Oracles abound with their looking glasses clear
and offerings on a plate.
But we consign them to the soothsayers of hate;
handicapped by our fear
we blind all of our seers.

Darkness is comforting when it works to cloud
a disruption soon to emerge.
A feigned surprise when the path shall diverge
unto roads unannounced
beneath constructed shrouds.

When steel-tipped wings shall graze the sun,
transient as a cresting wave,
all is consumed with no attention paid
to the damage we have done;
the bullets from our smoking guns.

Avowedly Private but Didactically Public

It’s a statement of grace,
it’s a show of good taste,
it’s a badge pinned to your shift;
of compartmentalised hurt.

Tell all about your energies as a result of your fine pedigree.
Turn away from what lies beneath with an inheritance of serenity.

It’s a fortune left untold,
it’s a story forged to be sold,
it’s a benchmark set too high;
a pack of institutional lies.

Mired in abject disassociation we create personas meant for emulation.
The aim is not for education but of idols for due supplication.

It’s physical and serene,
it’s digitally based doctrine,
it leans upon your thoughts
like you’re a train run off course.

Through the night into the day
there is a practice that must remain.
Into the dissonance of the chase
plunged into a public disgrace.

Under Cosmos Blankets We May Only Sleep

A net of ubiquity drapes over the globe,
accumulating wonders for the enlightened eye
and asphyxiating every cultural anaerobe.
We’ll leave their relics to become calcified
and exhibit them with the undignified.

Any custom is a costume to be tried
and stripped away when it becomes pale.
Apply the treatment; blood of genocide,
wash away, and remember to exhale,
no need to perceive the finer detail.

Damascus sent silks to western restaurants,
but when it sent the waves of wandering souls,
the diners sat back, called them combatants.
They consumed the kamayeh in their bowls
and choked as they cried for border controls.

There stands a chapel of hollow icons;
globetrotting facades to collect and keep
safe as we let atrocities become bygones.
As the apex of tension heightens too steep
under cosmos blankets we may only sleep.

Pass The Burning Glove

This baton is made of burning steel,
searing with haste to pass it through
to another spoke upon the wheel.
The hand that holds is ice concealed
with a melting core just out of view.

To whom that bears the orb and scepter
or of the solemn gavel and mantle,
turn away and reject the spectre,
vaunt not the pick nor the prospector
to ensure our world is not dismantled.

For those who fall among the mass
who feel as would a grain of sand,
whatever shall be will come to pass.
Not a soul to think that they’ll be the last
to pass the burning glove to the next frozen hand.

All-Seeing Aren’t the Eyed

A curtain’s descent occurs without sound;
nothing to announce the stifle of the shroud.
Gauze veils annex the sun from the forlorn,
and a murmuring to muzzle the mendicants’ mourn.
All so light abounds, we must dwell with clouds;
gliding through contrails on the borders of a storm.

The city walls are laid for the solace of the few
who live between shades of saturnine blue.
Banners proclaim it to be a sanctum of elevation
concealing the nature of psychic amputation.
The discarded truth, betrays a glimmer of abuse
as light was turned away from the covert sequestration.

All-seeing aren’t the eyed, who daren’t turn eyes upon the blind.
Sightless aren’t the blind, transcending the limits of the eyed.

Anachoresis

I see a metropolis of swarming bees
with confiscated humanity
yet a hive of activity.
Within a necropolis of entropy
sundered from all ecstasy;
the heaviest of realities.

The horizon reveals another way;
the blue breaking of dawning day
shrouded in Summer’s haze.
The anchorite’s mantle begs me to stay
among desert sands ablaze
devoid from every passing gaze.

Tar And Paint

This poem looks at the problems of censorship within society and how art can be used as a political tool, also observing what might happen if the art world was appropriated by the establishment as a propaganda machine.

They don’t know the spectrum bleeds
so you’ve gotta keep your canvas clean.
It’s top collar politics
from top dollar heretics
hooked on tax dodging caffeine.

When the gold rush has run dry
pans and paints wither and die.
State sponsored artistry;
blue honoured larceny;
the enslaved artists’ paradigm.

The established hand will dip the brush
into an inkwell of shared blood.
A seasoned corruption
from reasoned instructions.
Finding freer hearts to crush.

Paint a landscape so roseate
something sanctioned and appropriate.
Gild it with a lick of gold,
have nobody sick or cold
as we condemn the dissociate.

Veiled Vilification

In modern politics, we find ourselves confronted by our inability to change things too much. We have the opportunity to vote, but it’s not likely to change anything when the two parties likely to come into power are practically exactly the same. So what do we do when we feel disenfranchised by the official method of democracy? And what are the reactions to this? How are we made to seem like people who don’t deserve a say in this society. This is a rough poem that aims to explore this political phenomenon.

When we’re told it’s outside of our jurisdictions
we will lose our innate inhibition
to disagree with continuity for the sake of continuity,
sacrificing any remainder of fading ingenuity
condemning us to languish in abject perpetuity.

And don’t you know a riot is a gathering of three or four
semantic to turn peaceful protest into something more;
the demonisation of the lowers of this nation.
Eradication for the purpose of gentrification,
throwing us plebeians to disenfranchised obliteration.

The foxes lit the fire to smoke out the rabbit hole;
fangs stained with blood; hearts not quite as coal.
So we run to the peripheries, as outlaws of our energies,
howling the last of lamentation of our dying elegies;
victims on the altar of the unforgiving hegemony.

Austere To The Point Of Extinction

Politicians nowadays, and to an extent have been throughout history, eager to cut programs for arts and humanities in favour of saving money for the reserve of the purely scientific. This is what they call ‘austerity’. This poem centres on just that. What will happen to society if the arts are eradicated? If children aren’t told that they can be artists? We will form into a monolithic society following production based careers only. Everything measured by economic benefit. This is not how we should live; not at all.

Cut my throat and the blood will run a scarlet sun
setting on the deepest dreams of all but some.
Red rain will pollute every river and every tree;
a bloody reminder that we’ll never be free.
The basest artist may well starve and die
but their sanguinary canvas will refuse to lie.

Now we live through a voltaic effulgence
banned from what’s seen as archaic indulgence
and we have found our lives not ours to paint,
like a vast sea stained with a distilled taint.
They constantly discuss notions of efficiency
ignorant to their own soulful deficiency.

My tears fall like watercolours,
as we fill in another asphalt grave.
The petrol black absorbs all colour;
the landscape could not be saved.

A Perceived Distortion

This poem is about photography and newspapers, and how the images we see before us can tell so many different stories, whether they’re true or false. So much rests on what spin we put on them, and the explanations we give. I’ve chosen to put this in the context of the Second World War, particularly the London Blitz, but it’s still a topic that is very relevant today, as all of the newspapers we read have a particular political bias, and therefore the same story can serve two different interests. It’s all in the hands of the interpreter.

One picture shows a cathedral consumed by fire,
another shows it rising from the flames.
What if I told you they’re both the same photograph?
Does London burn or does it become strong again?

‘Oh! It’s a lovely war’
said by the lady in the widows weeds,
apparently.
‘We must defend British shores’,
uttered a lad of spectral seeds,
transparently.

For they’ve ashen faces and nowhere to go
searching for traces of someone they know.
The fires are burning but they frighten no more,
the tables are turning with death at their door.

Pick up a paper, you’ll see soldiers laughing,
read another and they’re dead in the field.
Some see a good life, others see the skeletons,
look behind the captions to see what is revealed.

‘Come, you must hide away’
shouted the general in uniform,
concernedly.
‘My faith will keep me safe’
prayed the woman with a cruciform,
avowedly.

For the light is all they have left to hope,
and their sight tells them they will not cope.
When the bombs come they’ll look to the clouds.
After the siren’s sung they’ll make it out.

But who’s to say what they’re feeling?
They may smile but they’re still reeling
from the missile smashing through the ceiling.
It’s their stories we make habit of stealing.
The rain washes away the ink of the page,
the page declaring stories of the age,
the interpretations of the pain and the rage,
of those who chose (or not) to engage.

When the records are lying, who will tell
the stories of the dying and their own hell?
Polarised are the thoughts in our minds
as we’re sought to become one of our kind.