Dr Martin

February 20, 2012

Dark Blue Doctor Martins
with the silver stars and worn down soles
I’ve had them since the early 90s,
they still fit now, my feet had grown;

I did the stars
at the back of Geometry
with a silver pen
bought from home,

got them in blue
to match my jumper
as Anna Rioden
had them in mauve.

Dark blue Doctor Martins
Footwear of the misfits
Footwear of the cool

Dark blue Doctor Martins.
Made for the army.
Worn to the zoo.

Wear them to parties.
Wear them to work.
Wear them to art school.
Wear them to flirt.

I wore them loose with the laces trailing,
suicide when changes rooms.

I wore them tied like a football player
kicking about with a gothic moon.

I’ve worn them to run
for the bus in the morning,
worn them with jeans,
with tights and a skirt,

worn them for a year
going to youth group
in love with Mark Bentley,
though he didn’t care.

Though I have flirted with kittens
stilettos and platforms
and bandaged in blisters
and hobbled in dirt.

Though I have walked
through the valley of the
barefoot morning
on broken glass
and puddled blood,

Dark Blue Doctor Martins
Kurt Cobain, I never left.

Dark blue Doctor Martins
Nirvana, Hallelujah
repent, I repent.

Dark Blue Doctor Martins
Army and Navy, Forty Pounds.

Dark Blue Doctor Martins
From the fascist on the riots
to the sports field and the gown.

Dark Blue Doctor Martins
I’m voting with my feet
I’m stepping out

Dark Blue Doctor Martins;
I had them then,
have them now.

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Miss Havisham’s House

February 15, 2012

She sleeps in a cupboard
upright and awkward
talks to the planter,
the elephant says –

drinks tea
from a see through saucer,
shoe box of sparrows,
pillar box fez.

Ms Rochester visits
on Tuesdays and Thursdays
to play all the records
and lie on the bed,

in the evenings she marks
the passage of hours
by counting the bones
in a crocodile’s head.

She writes long letters
on Victorian ledgers
to the great white bear
and the purple grouse,

a rail of veils,
brilliant as washing
pushes off
like a first dance.

Once she spots him
moving by the boxes,
radios up
to the moon in the loft.

She gazes, then squints
through a horn-rimmed
magnifier.

By time they arrive,
he’s always gone.

contract

February 9, 2012

will i flicker like a photo
rice stick to my arms
will we honeymoon in india
honey mead in prague

will miss havisham’s
photograph
bleached by the sun
stand on a sideboard
next to a phone

will it press itself
into blue jeans..

silver veil
be cups of tea

one for you
one for me

unsigned papers fill the attic
keeping us warm in the winter.

contract

February 7, 2012

will my wedding dress
be like my mum’s
miss havisham’s
photograph
bleached by the sun

will i flicker like a photo
rice stick to my arms
will we honeymoon in india
honey mead in prague

or will my dress
press itself
into it’s
blue jeans

bridal veil
be cups of tea
one for you
one for me

unsigned papers fill the attic
keeping us warm in the winter.

EDL

February 5, 2012

On the day you come
the police advise
to stay out of the street

and the city’s
like a ghost town
from London Road, to HMV.

On the high street
there’s a man
pissing outside Boots

in the centre by the tower
the air is thick
and hard like glue.

The designated pubs
are bursting at the seams.
Horses black with muzzles
are strewn across the street

I leave the flat for milk
but all the shops are shut
turning back I find
a cordon’s grown
around my home.

The cavalry is kettling
on Granby Street there’s broken glass
and everyone’s suspicious
one of them or one of us.

No woman in a Burkha
No man in Turban
Child in pram
No drinking out in cafes
No walking in the park.

The council says it’s got to happen
because our visitors have rights
so we should stay inside our houses
while they paint our windows white.

How dare you make me turn out lights
and stand behind my sofa

How dare you empty out the streets
and draw your lines around our lamposts

How dare you speak to poverty
and portion out your blame,

refugees and immigrants
not bankers in their trains

How dare you make me fearful
that you might throw a brick

How dare you travel to my city
and tell me how to live

This country is an island
you should defend
our right to mix

From the Polish to the Saxons
From the Windrush to the Vikings

Our Royalty is German
My grandma was a Jew
Your march will cost a million
If rights were rights, I would sue

Oh Bloody Hell
Bloody Hell
Bloody Hell
it’s EDL.

Bloody Hell
Bloody Hell
Go to Hell
EDL.

Addicted to Viewings

February 5, 2012

It’s something about the way
you rightmove.com,
something about the way
two clicks to the one –

something about the way you do…
multiple searches for mid terrace properties,

I might as well face it
I’m addicted to viewings…

It’s Saturday night
and I’m on the computer
tapping in miles
and punching in details.

I’m looking for a match
like a Guardian soul,
spacious townhouse
picture book pose.

I’d like a garage
with a garden
and a room with a view,
an aga in the kitchen,
and a cellar
with a pool.

Forget about the fact
I’ve got the budget for a terrace.

Forget about the mortgage.
Forget about the credit.

Forget about the houses.
Forget about the moving –

I might as well face it,
I’m addicted to viewings…

“And here is the hallway,
here is the kitchen,
here is the master,
here is the boxroom.

Here is the box room
with all it’s potential,
you could fit a double bed
in any direction…

Ah, you’ve noticed the flooring –
yes sorry about that,
the yard’s overlooked
by 15 flats…

It’s a south facing lounge
with the view of a wall,
it’s an investment property
so best not stall!”

And I’m writing down numbers,
got a hobby like a habit,
got property porn
like thongs in the attic.

“Conveniently placed”
means near somewhere better.

“Attractively presented”,
recently painted.

It’s a “popular suburb”
so expect overcrowding

“A comfortable home”,
adjust expectations.

“Ideal, for first time buyers”,
so you couldn’t swing a poodle there.

“Original flooring”,
will need renovation.

“A traditional property”,
there are vertical stairs.

But it’s something about the way
you can peruse the unfamiliar.
Something about the way
you meet so many people.

Something about the way
it’s Location, Location, like outdoor TV!

I might as well face it
I’m addicted to viewings.

I’ve been bitten by the bug.
I’m a mainlined search.
I’m browsing all night.
I can barely work.

I’m glued to the glass of
estate agent windows,
clicking and ringing
and doing the Limbo.

I’m visiting lounges
vacated of sofas,

walking through walls
of a stranger’s photos.

If I ever bought a place
I’d just have to move.

I might as well face it,
yes I might as well face it,

I might as well face it,
I’m addicted to viewings.

EDL

February 3, 2012

On the day you come
the police advise
to stay out of the street

and the city’s
like a ghost town
from London Road, to HMV.

On the high street
there’s a man
pissing outside Boots

in the centre by the tower
the air is thick
and hard like glue.

The designated pubs
are bursting at the seams.
Horses black with muzzles
are strewn across the street

I leave the flat for milk
but all the shops are shut
turning back I find
a cordon’s grown
around my home.

The cavalry is kettling
on Granby Street there’s broken glass
and everyone’s suspicious
one of them or one of us.

No woman in a Burkha
No man in Turban
Child in pram
No drinking out in cafes
No walking in the park.

The council says it’s got to happen
because our visitors have rights
so we should stay inside our houses
while they paint our windows white.

How dare you make me turn out lights
and stand behind my sofa

How dare you empty out the streets
and draw your lines around our lamposts

How dare you speak to poverty
and portion out your blame,

refugees and immigrants
not bankers in their trains

How dare you make me fearful
that you might throw a brick

How dare you travel to my city
and tell me how to live

This country is an island
you should defend
our right to mix

From the Polish to the Saxons
From the Windrush to the Vikings

Our Royalty is German
My grandma was a Jew
Your march will cost a million
If rights were rights, I would sue

Oh Bloody Hell
Bloody Hell
Bloody Hell
it’s EDL.

Bloody Hell
Bloody Hell
Go to Hell
EDL.