slap slap slapping along.
white as salt and freckled
from March to September.
Willowing and wide.
When I’m old
and all opinion has withered into phrases
lining my shoes, where once sand spilled.
Do not ignore me.
I’m not a child.
Bedridden, with cracked ribs,
unable to sing my lifesong,
sit and hold me, like the friends we were.
you can understand my jimbledjangled-sounds.
When I’ve used up words
till breadcrumbed they trail verbs and nouns,
from now, to then, to you;
follow them and read them, still.
When Time steals my memory
look at me the same
when I’m old and forgetting what’s for tea
when I cannot remember our grandson’s name,
laugh and talk to me.
Do not think of me the forgotten,
I am still alive, just distant, shy.
Laugh when you tell stories of how,
when you visited my bed,
arm behind your back,
I thought you’d been amputated.
How I rode to school every day on a horse.
Stopped a guy with a knife
just by being calm.
Cry, if you want, if it will help you.
Think of me when you see videos
of weddings, watching the children
going down the waterslides, just nappies
alive, laughing, living my full.
Remember me, love me.
I am never old with you.
This is my 200th post since starting the website on Valentines Day 2010. Woo.
I went to Word Soup last night in Preston, it was their 1st birthday! All grown up. Anyway I heard a lot of good poetry and it was a lovely venue. I was on the open mic and did For Dicks and Linguistic Approaches to Love. Here’s the latter, you’ve all heard For Dicks enough by now I’m sure. Video recorded by Norman Hadley.
Linguistic Approaches to Love
I could reminisce about the sibilance in your uncertain sounds
the fricatives of your fucks, the vowels in your moans.
Could dot-to-dot the consonants that construct your
harsh-angry-hate and make of them a petal, bloomed.
Could take the condemnations, the indignations
dissolve them into sheer potential of hope.
I could reword your sentences, edit your paragraphs
recast you as a whole different character to the world.
Could take your adjectives away until you’re forgiven
for all the words you played with.
Could crush all the verbs into letters with no meaning
till we’re left with no substance - too.
Just people trapped in the present with no action
gaining no traction, just stagnant and blue.
It’s the beauty of love,
that we’d do anything for you.
Others hated Troll’s hangout spots
in abandoned houses, estates
a modern troll—.
Didn’t like the water, sorry trolleys
pet plastic bags, following him.
How he’d smoke and guffaw
and drink too much
brazen, blazing with life
climb up the scaffolding
on construction sites
shouting my name.
Troll could make constellations
out of bottle caps,
unwrap Quality Streets with his toes,
remake the world his own.
Unravelled before his time
lost. Grown up
he uncrooked his teeth,
flattened his hair
smoothed his face to satin flesh
grabbed his briefcase
and snuffed his spark.
Shadow sits behind you.
Watches, licking his lips.
Witches writhe in his hands
dancing cloudsong storms
They bellyjangle rain into hail,
then let it fade till it’s just you and him
and a broken smile.
Know and think of us:
how we turned night-time into dawn
just by … chatting
till the birds and bin men came
I’m in the process of streamlining the different sides to the site so that performances will be in a repository of their own. So, welcome to the video section! wahey! Anyway, I met up with the lovely Jo Bell - Glastonbury Festival website Poet in Residence and Director of National Poetry Day here in the UK the other day. Dominic Berry joined us and we had a good chinwag. Speaking of which, her new project Bugged wants UK writers to eavesdrop on July 1st and write novel poetry/ fiction/ etc based on snippets that they overhear. They have a Facebook page and a Twitter so go contacting if you’re up for it! Less of a tangent Max … Jo had brought her Flip video camera with her so we took a few videos of us performing poems in an alleyway-type-thing near Manchester Central Library - here’s one of mine!
BY THE COLOUR OF DEATH. - Sam Stefan & Max Wallis
Limited edition (40) hand printed two-layer screen print on textured paper.
This is the start of something special. Sam Stefan is part of the DPOV art collective and we’ve been meaning to collaborate since this time last year. Forty of these prints have been made and framed in glass. They’re numbered and extremely limited - we’re not doing this design again. They’re A4 (210 × 297 mm) and include the framed print and poem. Prices are still being finalised and the shop will be updated with them as soon as possible but you can email me at max.robert.wallis[@]googlemail[.]com for enquiries. They can be shipped worldwide.
Wake up get coffee go school go form sit down say yes sit alone say yes. Bell.
Walk lesson sit down in lesson sit learn. Sit up you’re slouching.
Sit down you’re standing. Sit up. Sit down. Sit up. Sit down.
Ask to take your blazer off! Can I take my blazer off?
No. Summer. Boiling. Teachers command heating.
Wasp hits window pane wind plays hair. Bell. Shuffleshuffleshuffle.
Eat dinner alone. Burn pasta in Food Tech. Go to library when you see a fist
around hallway corner wrapped in brickhousesportsplayer skin.
Know deep down just insecure. Still insecure. Sit read, read and sit, watch clock tick.
stop! Bell. Ding. P.E. get changed watching guys watching you watching them.
Wonder why legs so hairy. Listen people talk shaving foam, girls and cum.
Think in computer games, books, all the work you have to do. Hit. Slap. Punch ribs.
Don’t hang about with losers—kick—your brother was popular.
Go out play games never play again.
Watch crotches bounce in shorts. Sweat, salivate, hardon.
Wonder why your legs look so thin.
Wonder if you’ll grow into the socks or if they’re meant to be that big.
When armpit hair will grow.
Willies run around fields with humans attached to them.
Pretend you have asthma, pretend you have bone problems,
pretend you have a sore throat because you need that to do press ups …
wonder why all the guys get groin strain and you don’t.
Drink water. Play hide and seek with shadows.
Nice P.E. teacher has funny moustache, teaches geography.
Try to play with girls but you’re not allowed.
Don’t feel like a girl but don’t feel like boyboys either. Zoom. Undressed, tie knotted, blazer on,
Sore leg is bruise. Go French talk French, know French for Fuck and people laugh with you.
Plucky chicken. Play chicken. Voice high, you’ll be gay, boys say.
Guy threatens you in electronics with knife. That’s life.
Try to never wake up, take pills but stick to doughnuts. Last and only attempt. Laugh about it now.
Puberty hits cum comes, slippity slip, new friend play games with. Wakes up with you!
Doesn’t answer back!
Watch porn all day till your hand hurts.
Mum and dad find internet search.
Blame it on guinea pig.
Wake up wank off get coffee go school go form sit down say yes sit alone say hi—hi, hello.
Girl says yo.
Talk weird talk fun get drunk go numb, make friends have parties smoke pot in bush fourteen
laughing. Man in moon in leaf, dig boot out of river, twirl around fall over.
Celebrate. Drink. Smoke up trees scare people.
Go college get forgotten, get friends get popular.
Snakeskin shrivelled off loner into new man, new hair, nice shoes.
Have sex, doesn’t last.
People talk like they didn’t hate you.
Get grades, have friends
go surfing get cool, fall for boy, have sex, have noisy sex parents heard
go clubbing get drunk no boys just drunk, let world swirl
Do good, go uni, lose boy, drop out, lose another, break down, clamber up
still same best friend now grown up smiling says yo,
Drink more, laugh more, eat more, smoke more, hug more.
Think back, hazed, grey-phased: past.
Grin. Walk on. Going somewhere son.
Indie lads are a problematic temptation
when seeking that cure to frustration:
impossible to know
which ones’ll say ‘no!’
and which ones really want you to fuck ‘em.
I dunno if I see the world differently to people
whether it’s good, or not, if I do.
If it’s normal to imagine ivy-twined imps
crawling out from under hedges
and rusted-railed-rats scuttling on the street
chaperoning me when I’m walking home at night.
That I can tell the future from my cold cup of tea.
When I was young I had lessons from a family friend
on how to fly.
We never managed it,
the weather and the moon
weren’t right for it.
Is it weird that I think I’m a wizard sometimes?
try to open locks with a twitch of my hand
or a blow of my breath
think that it’s just a matter of time
before someone reveals to me my wand.
I’d wear a robe outside
but it clashes with the sun.
I can phase through metal and mirrors
in my head.
Can make trees grow their leaves back in winter.
I can make the grass speak to me
and listen to the treesong.
deep-bass-soul singers, you know.
I fly in my dreams
and sometimes when no one’s looking
and I’m alone on the road
I’ll run and run and jump
just to test whether or not it’s time.