Close – New Poem



I want to bring you the world.

I want to crumple your invitation to death.


But you lay there, this source of tranquillity,

that you haven’t acknowledged with words yet.

You know it is coming and there is nothing you can do,

but go, and go smiling, like the loose ends have all been tied

and you are ready.


I have had time to practise my mood,

but my head is filled with traffic,

of places we haven’t been to,

the forests we haven’t fucked in,

the children we haven’t had.


You’ve dipped three times

and each time I thought

I’d lost everything.

What am I going to do when you really go?


When sand finally fills your throat?


I’m already in a different world to yours.

You have come out of your nap smiling.

I want to cut this illness out of you,

sub it out like your Mum stamps her fag into the ashtray.


My fingers have been interlocked with yours for seven hours.

I want to make you smile while your eyes are still open.


I can’t schedule what’s going to happen

and I become lost in tears.


I cried on the tube, on the way here.

The world in there just didn’t seem to care.

Everyone just raised their papers a bit higher.


It is six o’clock. Dusk settles.

Things start to happen.

It’s raining and it sounds lovely.

Everyone is praying outside the door,

I can hear them, like the hum of hundreds of thousands of bees.

I want to say it’ll do no good at all,

but, like arctic wolves, they need to cope with the cold,

endure the wintery conditions to come.