While I, erm, get a proper site together, I'm using this blog to share a few poems that I've either performed a few times and get asked about a lot, or others that I never get to finish, or never make it to the stage.

Check out my bio (there's a link somewhere here) for more info about me, and http://www.zoneonetosix.blogspot.com/ for gigs, random thoughts, poetry I'm writing right now, and more
non-poetry related stuff.



Tuesday, 5 April 2011


This isn’t just any poem
This is a choice selection
Of carefully-constructed words... and sounds
Consonants and vowels
Hand-picked individually and wrapped in subtle nuances
With the faint drizzle of the aroma of time-soaked metaphor

This isn’t just any poem
This is a sensual poem, an essential poem
A full carbohydrate slice of deviance, devised under the influence

This isn’t just any poem
This is a love poem
And a like poem
A war poem and a hate poem
An angry... an irate poem
All neatly hand-rolled into one delicious bite-sized morsel

You could even call this a latino poem, compa’y
Pa’ que sepa’ que esto no es simplemente un poema

This isn’t just any poem
This is one of them posh poems, one of them clever poems
That’s meant to tap-dance around your head
And Riverdance around your ears
This poem was designed to entertain you
And then lure you into a false sense of complacent comfortableness
So that, finally, I can talk to you about just desserts
And the disturbing trends in this world of crème brûlée:

Babies, marinated underneath rocket attacks
Left to soak in the stale sauce of their own blowtorched mothers
Or how about this?
Young men, still, left to sweat it out in their orange jumpsuit skins
Serving time (still) unknown
And something else you should never try at home
But nevertheless still happens right here inside our very own kitchens
Young children left to simmer in detention centres for months, pending their exportation

But adding all of these raw, random, sour ingredients to the mix at such a late stage
Would prove undoubtedly unsettle the stomach
And would prove to be virtually indigestible
So, for the moment, I would like to declare this poem
Utterly unsuitable for consumption


Tuesday, 8 February 2011

The Drum

I was conceived in drum
Tough, taut skin stretched tight
And beat, beat, beat
Till sweat soaked flesh brought me fourth

I was born in drum
Hit with sticks and not stones
And they shaped my tone
And the beat, beat, beat
Moulded me into a melody

I was raised in drum
Hollow barrel of my inner soul
The hands and the sticks
Just beat tap beat-beat
Until I began to make music with my wails
Resonating harmonies with my howls
Skin-crawling rhythms with each crack of the stick
On my mahogany skin
Soaked in the history of violence

Oh talking drum, speak to me!
Tell me how many trees felled?
Recount to me the blood rushing to palms
The hot slap of pressing hands
The tap tap tap of the tingly-fingered
Tremble of the skin still suffering
Under the snare of percussion

Oh speak to me drum!
With your crashing cymbalism
Ricocheting through centuries
Where clashes create fusions
And new rhythms are formed

Tell me, how can such violence breed such music?
How can such force bring out such rhythm and reason and rhyme?
How can the uprooting of a whole people
Become the beautiful beat-tap-beat pulsing inside of me?
Filling my veins with history
Stretching my baritone vocal chords with its howls
Of bloodshed and injustice?

Oh speak to me drum
For I am your echo…


(Something I wrote at the same time as a short story with the same title... Just performed this once)

Sunday, 6 February 2011

Tell Me...

Tell me what you believe
What you really, truly believe

What rights you'd fight for
Lay down your life for
What you want to strive for
Save for
(Mis)behave for or just be brave for

Tell me what you stand for
And what you'd sit down at the back of the bus for
Prepare to make a fuss for
Bleed for
Cuss for

Tell me what you believe
What you really truly believe

What do you have a dream for?
And what would you lose sleep for?
Sigh for, weep for
Starve for weeks for?
What would you take risks for?
Raise a gloved fist for?
Sit down and resist for?
Chains on the wrist for?

Please tell me what you believe
What you really, truly believe

What would you stand and block a tank for?
And receive no thanks for?
Just bullets in your chest
No peace and no rest
What could make them want to put you under lifelong house arrest?

Please tell me what you live for
And what you'd die for
Lie for, kill for, surrender your will for
What would you give your last resource for?
Throw yourself under a horse for?
Prepare to be jailed for?
27 years and no bail for?

Please tell me what you believe
What you really, truly believe

What would you sacrifice your life for?
Get scarred with a knife for?
Be put behind bars and risk your children and your wife for?
That's your boyfriend/girlfriend/civil partner, your siblings too...

What can't you turn a blind eye to
Because it ain't right to you?
Is there something that would make you go to lengths you're not used to?
Make a stand even though you know people aren't going to like you?

Please tell me what you believe
What you want
What makes you breathe?
What would you speak up for?
Is there anything you give a fuck for?

I thought so.

I thought so.

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

A Gay Poem

They asked me if I had a gay poem
So I said "Straight up, no!
"My poems don't meander between straight lines
My poems don't mince their words
Or bend
Or make queer little observations"

They asked me if I had a gay poem
So I answered honestly
That, no, I didn't have any gay poetry
And even if, unthinkably, I did
What would it say about me?

I mean, even presenting the question
Puts me in a precarious position
And how would I even begin to broach the subject
With my own creation?

Like... "Excuse me, poem, are you gay?
Have you grown up contrarily to what I wanted you to say?
I most certainly didn't write you that way
Was it something I said, something I did that turned you?
Maybe I should have peppered your verses
With sport, girls and beer
Maybe as your author I deserted you...
Or did another writer turn you queer?"

Ok, let's say, hypothetically, that this poem is gay
Maybe it's just a confused poem that needs straightening out
Maybe I could insert verses from Leviticus
Speak over it in tongues
Douse it in holy water
Recite it the Qu'ran
Give it a beat, beat, beat
Boom box blasting out in the street
"Batty poem fi dead, batty poem fi dead
Rip up chi chi poem inna shred"

They asked me if I had a gay poem
And I answered "No"
But the truth is I didn't know
Until one of my very own poems stepped up
And tapped me on the shoulder
It said, "Look here Dad/Author
I'm now that much bolder
And I'm not confused
And not alternative
And even though the words I choose to marry with
Make me different
It don't make me any less eloquent

"I don't need to be overly elegant
So maybe that's why I stepped under your gaydar
But why are you so afraid to embrace it?
Face it! It's just another part of me
You can't erase it

"The more you try to label me with your twisted synonyms
The more you say you hate the sinner
And despise the sin
The more you try to clip my words
And stifle my expression
The more I know it's you, not me,
Whose morality should be called into question"

They asked me to read out a poem
They said, "Choose one of your strongest
One of your best
Choose a poem that don't stand for any foolishness"
And they asked me if I had a gay poem...
So I said