Neti neti neti


(A Tibetan phrase used in meditation which means ‘’not I’’. )

I am not this, nor this, nor that

or ever have been.

I look in mirror & I see

my dark brother staring back at me

beckoning with claw like hand

to follow where I need to go

to blend the secrets

of your soul; with mine.

Forget this awkwardness

this outward crust of language

which has us turning circles

 just to comprehend

exactly what we’re feeling.

I drop your hand

I let you go

for the first time in my life

this is what I believe.

Although the tears come stronger now

I’m not caught up in your leaving.

Push me gently to the door

turn around I’ve vanished.

As you briskly walk away

 the human tide engulfs you

I was just another hand that

touched you through the night

I’m not this, nor this, nor that:

or ever have been.

The glass has shattered

yet deep inside the frame holds strong

the dark brother looks my way

around his cloak of swirling blue

a falcon cries his crazy song.

I break the mirror

turn away

& with a mind that knows

there is no hope

remind you with an aching smile:

I am not this, nor this, nor that,

or ever will be.

Recreate your fantasies

know the space reserved for me

is burning with its pure white flame



Full moon brought troubled waters

dark creatures whirled in the caverns of my soul

wind whipped the boat with confusion until daybreak.


You wanted it all, the pure and the clean

the pivot of my spirit that sings with guardians wings.


Out beyond the horseshoe reef,

(which didn’t bring us any luck)

the Atlantic rolls its heavy thunder.


What can I tell you under the three palm trees

where Johnny Depp buried the gold doubloons?


There’s no gold here, only scattered moments

of ‘might have been’

while someone plucks a string to sing a prayer for sleep


& the hungry ghosts chatter.


Tobago Cays

Yes, no, yes.

I might have done it

Because you wanted to

because you asked

I could have done it

If I shut my eyes

thought of how it was

before we started this.

We might have made it

in the future conditional

of parallel lives,

where we sail forever

under the green flash

of Caribbean skies

We might still do it,

& I did try,

but first I pushed you to the limit,

didn’t see why  you shouldn’t pay the price

for your indecision

your little white lies

that made it all seem alright

(in your head) .

I asked for all or nothing

when I began to realise

that no love lies in shadows

under these sup eternal skies

with the moon blinding us.



Firelight fades

into spring blossom, fragile:

a chill still.


Old friends call

sharing last flicker of today

filing brittle bone.


I understand age now

it creeps like tide

tick tock seconds:


sapping reason to believe

bringing longing

memory plague.


Of you I’m not convinced:

you tittle tattle

talk of innocence


but blood drip drips

from rheumy finger.


Spring falters but still

in high fields where

lambs nicker


there waits a promise

of something.





Bitter wind

Wind bites,

gates slide

blossom tumbles

so much useless



Thoughts float

in the dry air

crackle along


twisted at


City streets

choked :


peoples dreams

float above traffic

ideas fight

for recognition.


The poet sweeps.





Hail driving

skin to slick red

I feel the heel

of spring

as it descends.


I’m a vessel

open for business

channelling your


washing you clean.


Hail smashes

cut ice glass

leaving no


just a clear


with no view.

There is no access to the non -manifest




Midnight till 8.a.m.;

I send my prayers

into the dark,


the world turns it’s head.


I tried to reach you

in my dreams but

you were nowhere,


our love was laid on shallow ground.


The foxes wail:

void off course moon

orange splash of city light.


I find you in unforeseen corners.


Dimple of a strangers smile

touch of skin on cheek

last night it burnt me,


a murmur in the airways.


Midnight to 8.a.m.

revelation hasn’t spawned

illumination: it comes in beads of sweat


our grave of love is quite elliptic.

What I can say



It’s the writing down of what I can’t say,

that incubates monsters:

octopus sliding from beach to veranda

aliens gliding across English lawns

children turned to vampires round a Guy Fawkes fire.


In trying to create mystery from your ordinariness I faltered,

tripped and splattered on the pavement of your shallow clichés

made scars that ache and welts to mirror the fragrance of your skin,

the perfection of outer casing left me hungover,

blinded fingers caressing sleepless nights of non- events,

body cringing from the battering to come

as I courted profanity.


Still the blame of failure clings  under nails

and all the washing, all the washing, to no avail.


It’s the realisation of what I can’t be, all the  “can’t be’s” that are expected;

blazing a trail of destruction through these middle class streets

leaving cindered beds and hopes binned like old newspapers.

Things I can’t say rise like images of a litany long remembered

chiming in the brains of dead nuns,

pink blancmange, click of worry beads.


I was never more sure of nothing

as it echoes in the cellular memory of dying stars

still visible in these orange city nights as pulsars,

lending some kind of eternity to this impeachable generation.

Wherever I look poets emerge from cracks in the fabric

selling their prophecies to the hungry emptiness like ice cream cones,

dripping at the extremities.


It’s cruelty that super glues this bright successful globule of society

where I dream out of control scenarios.

It’s the fragility of trust beyond words,

words escaping like steam under pressure.

It’s the movement of air from a still life breeze,

the apples in the bowl that I painted yesterday,

a sudden gesture never to be re-captured.



It’s the writing down of what I can’t say.


For courage is a minefield of prostitution

which teeters on the skin fold of truth;

and all that is worth the telling is not said

and you who have tried to touch me fail in the twilight


for I am lost to the seduction of angel’s breath,

rising and falling

for I am lost in the allure of unknown galaxies

rising and falling


for I am lost in the invisible metaphor of

 “ might have been “

while the world revolves in it’s worn out symbolism

and it’s the writing down of what  I can’t say


that incubates monsters.