Oxalis corniculata var. atropurpurea


Oxalis corniculata var. atropurpurea


Trying to put a solid name to every colour

you think you can see in those posies

of three-hearted leaves, you scribble down

a recipe calling for Verdigris, a spool of

old-style camera film, liver (both cooked

and uncooked), the persistent stain left

by berries on your fingers in late summer.



And all the while they are taking over

your world, starting – naturally – at the

front doorstep before flouncing off at

right angles towards the alley, the off-white

cones of their roots somehow deriving

sustenance from its mortar, slowly working

loose the mass of its hundred year stone.



first published in Envoi, 2018

Two poems in the Winter issue of Rat’s Ass Review

It’s a fine thing to have poems appearing in the fabulous Rat’s Ass Review again. Back in 2016, two pieces of mine – “Why we are not birds yet” and “Son” – were included in the Fall-Winter issue, whilst “All breakages must be paid for” popped up in the homage to love and lust and relationships that is Love and ensuing madness.

So my thanks go out once again to RAR editor Roderick Bates for giving a home to “Tidying your garden ahead of the wake” and “Listening to A Day in the Life for the first time”. You can check out the amazing Winter 2020 issue here.

Happy reading!

Lobster tail


Lobster tail

Uncommon to find such a thing up here,
beyond the exhausted seaweed,
vacated mussel shells and limp
trawlermen’s gloves in bleached out
blue or yellow rubber, their fingers
often present if somewhat perished;
but there it was, cradled among the
whirled nests of exhausted marram
woven untidily through a scalp
of sutured pebbles. Time had melted
flesh away, revealing the miracle
of its engineering, in segments
and articulations, a suit of armour
still functioning in our snow-bitten,
astonished fingers, as we prowled
the empty shore, pleased to find
such a simple gift, today of all days.


first published in Ink, Sweat and Tears, 2018