“Gay Cop Murdered”

Sitting at his usual spot,

his stool at the bar,

nodding now and then

to acquaintances

people he bought a drink

someone he spent a night with,

waiting for a new face

to smile at him.

Loneliness was his companion

And fated attitude a friend,

Come get me if you dare.

And of course they did.

Trust in Friendships would not

Protect him, when they

Themselves needed it more.

Bullets perhaps withal as

Worthily destined for others

Were bartered and exchanged

For his hearts blood.

Unarmed and with back turned

He received his fate and

Face down, life’s blood

Drained out and around him

His battles won and lost.

 

 

 

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A LOVE POEM

Falling in love again

Not a thing expected

love also brings pain

memories collected

Falling in love again

A thing not yet perfected

pursued with no less restrain

this time perhaps more respected

Falling in love again

The heartache to be accepted

No need to be my ball and chain

I want my love reflected

Falling in love again

Falling in love again

Falling in love again

Is bliss in my brain.

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Haiku

Two, young and trendy

One, in his hand a chap stick

London’s air strips him

 

Londoners look grim

Hurrying impatiently

Life’s relentless grind

 

Death message by text

Unfinished business by choice

A revengeful death

 

Long travelled marble

Re-used again and again

His curves adorn it

 

Skin so very soft

Indian hands my friends says

Caresses I seek

 

The mind understands

My heart and soul embraces

Polyamory

 

Gay patriarchy

Unless proven otherwise

Exclusionary

 

Grow a big strong heart

Be as you wish to be seen

Loving keeps me sane

 

If your plan a fails

There’s 25 more letters

Trees stand, and let go

 

Seeking the Stone Age

Youthful feet chase Pokémon

The tide turns again

 

Fleeing refugees

The boy sits in bloodied shock

To have lived through this

 

At the grocer’s shop

I was the English grandson

Apples torn in half

 

Mint imperials

From tall jars on high shelves

My grandmothers treat

 

Patience by gas light

Blue pipe smoke, tales of New York

Bluebottles and wasps

 

Fun filled long summers

An old quarry, rough playground

Blacks mad bull raging

 

Two communities

This man has no connection

A tree without roots

 

Curiosity

Fertile imaginings

Seeds carried far away

 

Reckonings of life

Lives, leaves carried on the breeze

Face it, don’t look back

 

The mind seeks answers

Souls crave loving nourishment

Carbon is inert

 

What is the spirit?

A thing we cannot behold

Childish innocence

 

My androgyny

Undifferentiated

Juxtaposition

 

Gender bending men

Male dominant narratives

An oxymoron

 

How men think they cope

Troubling masculinities

Find that inner child

 

I knelt beside them

Imagining their ardour

Consummated love

 

They fade, loose colour

Like the love they once shared

Memories echoed

 

Six dry red roses

Rest, abandoned with a view

Tokens left behind

 

Red love tokens rest

On the edge of an outlook

Faded, dry like life

 

I found love tokens

Resting, left behind, marking

And I thought of you

 

We miss each other

Dried petals connected me

Our love reaches out

 

They lay on the ledge

Once blood red, filled with sap

Now discarded, lost?

 

Six ruby red stems

Lie in winters decaying

Ashes long gone now

 

First, procreation

Then recreation, ah sex

So, concentration

 

Chit chit chit, a wren

Robin’s solo lullaby

Lavender browning

 

Days grow, short again

A last bloom of butterflies

Green nuts underfoot

 

Late summer echoes

Red laden hawthorn boughs bend

And the sun grows cold

 

Convicted eyes leer

Contemptuous of our stare

Menace, starkly bare

 

Shimmering moist

Love and joy swim openly

The stream flows through us

 

Love can suffocate

My world feels a lot smaller

Autumnal breezes

 

The black iris chills

Their rage enhanced

The fear is in them

 

Sex connects us all

I stopped validating him

Relationships lie

 

He has a presence

His eyes smile and that’s a gift

Him revealed by it

 

My world feels smaller

There is less connection now

Like a lone wether

 

Lost and found

Coveting and loving

We need to talk, men.

 

Timeless weathering

Grockling rocks at bloody bridge

Cascading chorus

 

An otter edges

Blends in spaces, affording

Safe passage beyond

 

A lonely leaf falls

In my solitude I grieve

For all loves lost leaves

 

He said he loved me

Now he says he needs space

Driftwood & solitude

 

Heartbreaking is real

Heart aching physical pain

Separation hurts

 

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Do you want cream with that?

A full carton of whole milk

Landed on the road as we arrived

With a dusting of window pane.

There was shouting, and then

A ramekin of jam followed.

Our presence is declared

We climb the stairs.

The flat’s kitchen is in disarray.

Two men sit at the kitchen table.

A, ‘fuck yous anyway’ indicates

Another in the room above.

He is sitting on the bed naked,

A tea towel covering his,

Embarrassment. Rocket

(Because we are all known

By our nicknames) edges the cloth

Up to ‘check’ for injury.

There, slightly the worse for wear

A Pavlova sits perched or impaled,

Hard to say now, the crisp

Outer is cracked and broken

And the soft marshmallow centre exposed.

 

You want cream with that mate? my colleague

Asked, I turned, beating a hasty retreat.

 

 

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WHEN, first times.

I don’t recall my first birth!

I was born again, to Jesus, 18 years later, or

For that matter, my first steps or words.

Imagine your first memory; is being thrust

From your mother’s womb; Dear god!

Some say they do, I’m not so sure,

how Freudian is that.

 

Nor do I recall my first flu, a few weeks later

Or the penicillin which nearly achieved,

what the flu could not,

How many times since,

have I filled in that ‘allergies’ box?

 

My first memory of Mum, aged three..that’s me,

was in hospital with my new born sister

Taken there by my gran of whom,

my first abiding memory is in the house,

where she,and her mother and mothers mother,

had been born bred and buttered.

 

With a cigarette in her bony hand and

long finger of ash on it like a twig

of a silver birch tree, ready to fall into,

the pan where she had just thrown

the still wriggling fresh skinned eel

my grandfather caught only an hour before.

 

Another cigarette smouldering,

on a wee dish, beside the stove,

and another by her favourite chair.

And yes she died of cancer way before her time

but looking so much older.

 

 

My first day at pre-school aged 3 ¾,

Miss Churchill’s school of elocution.

Somewhere in the suburbs (of course)

of Manchester,  where on my first day

I had to stand on the table because my accent was;

too pikey I suppose for her erudite ears.

 

And my first day in a catholic primary,

in Ballymena hey,(we hail from there)

where there too I had to stand on the desk.

I didn’t even know what a Hail Mary was,

never mind able to recite out loud,

to the rest of the class. The  utter shame of it!

 

The first realization I had,

of sectarian hatred,

was in my granny’s kitchen

some man, Paisley all rant & rave & rage

(fulminating, just because I like the word)

on the radio, and i saw the hurt in her face.

 

The cheeks of my arse long recall,

The first time my father hurt me,

life’s pubescent  theme until,

the day I absconded for the last time.

He squared up to me… I realized then,

how small, old and grey a man he had become.

 

My first fantasy at school, a PE teacher,

looking younger than his years,

First love at Uni, a Butler from Mullingar,

both unrequited and unknown, un-noticed of course.

1st person I confessed my shame to,

And my very first (in)-/ nay  glorious kiss with him.

 

My baptism (a ritual initiation) at 18 by immersion,

not in the sea as I wished, and

the disappointment when I told my gran,

and she said…sure don’t they kick with the wrong foot.

That moment I thought god spoke to me,

Directly and utterly to me,

And when I finally got the cosmic joke.

 

When my father told me, aged 21,

of his resolve at my birth,

to each and every day ensure

I feared him, and he did.

That moment I held my son,

as his mother’s womb was being sewn closed,

and how effortlessly I offered oaths,

and promises of a different kind,

to any gods old or new that would listen.

He grasped my fore finger, sneezed,

bartering water for air as is a new-born’s way,

and we shook on it.

 

1st sex with my son’s mother,

after we married,

and the fact that she cried.

Years later, with a man,

and the fact that he laughed,

never having seen ginger hair, down there!

 

1st time I told David,

my love and life now for 11 years,

that I was in love with him;

….and that he couldn’t,

say the same back to me at that moment

but, he did when the time was right.

 

In hospital again, where nurses pleaded,

with grandpa Davey to hang in and stay with them;

I lost my first relative within sight and sound

as his alcohol addled aorta ruptured

and emptied the cavity of his heart,

into the void of his chest.

 

The night I knelt beside a fallen colleague,

and friend; in the Parliament Bar

as his hearts blood spread out and around him.

The night I knelt beside a young soldier,

called Cyril Smith, how we ribbed him;

even then,

torn apart, stripped to his union jack boxers

and I perhaps said my first and last truly heartfelt prayer.

 

The very first time as a grown man,

I feared I would die

& the time I wanted to die,

and the first time I very nearly did die

…. So now I want to live.

 

That..moment…

I pulled and pointed a gun on someone,

and saw their fear,

but wondered where mine was.

 

The first bewildering moments,

after wakening up having been;

’blown up’…. And the joy,

at feeling limbs and fingers and,

my torn bloody head were all still connected

 

That dreadful evening,

I told my son’s mother I was gay,

and to this day am still shocked,

that she didn’t know, and that I could have been so so wrong….

and  yet my mother and in her 70’s seemed so,

agreeably unsurprised etc

 

The second time in my life,

I said’ I do’… and knowing I would.

 

The reality of my 50th birthday,

and my son laughingly telling me,

to ‘behave old man….. old man!’,

and not for the first time.

 

Finally, the first time I heard my son,

and his love tell me they were ‘pregnant’.

I doubt it will be the last….

and that makes me happy.

despite knowing that the first times in life

now, are more often than not,

mostly  in my life,also the last times….

Still part the journey, a going on.

arte

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