Author Archives: sjlavery

How are You ?

How you appear.
How you are.
How are things?
How the devil.
How in hell.
How mistaken.
How to disappear.
How to remain.
How to be.
How to know.
How are you?


On The Train

We are all on the train.
In the carriage,
hermetically sealed
from rain or shine.
There’s she remembering
that long lost love affair.
A man interrogating
a boy he doesn’t know.
His young captive is an engineer.
He throws in fuzzy logic,
hoping for some connectivity.
And there’s the old lady.
The cold lady, who moves from
seat to seat.
And me, moving at one hundred MPH.
Reading and reflecting.
Thinking between stops.


Animal Heaven

Do all good animals
go to heaven.
Do they –
Fly high in the sky
with gossamer wings.
Released from fences
and enclosures of people.
Free to roam,
without risk.

No more,
Frozen headlight shocks.
No more,
smoking hunters guns.
No traps or snares.
No poisons or pollutants.
Just good old fashioned
fresh air and mud.
And lots of warm
delicious things to eat.

In animal heaven,
eggs are hatched
not fried over easy.
And fish are never seen
in the company of chips.
And horses don’t race,
they canter at
their own pace.

In animal heaven
There’s room for all:
The cantankerous and
pampered.
The biters and barkers.
The stingers and snappers.
Everyone, large or small.
With only one teeny tiny exception –
those strange upright apes
who think they’re so great.


The Year Everything Stops

No more telephones.
No more internet.
No TV.
No window on the world.
No lifetime guarantees.
No fixing the broken.
No more token enthusiasm.
No more coasting.
Just dog eared determination.
And a certain derangement.
A great unravelling.
A new way of seeing.
A hand to mouth existence.
A body without soul.
A prayer for the dying.
A darkness without artificial light.


We Shine a Light

He took flight
on a sunshine day.
Sometime before nine.

Death what can you
do with it.
Throw it a line?
Make some excuse for it.
Romanticise.
Make it an unsettling
place to be.

Stand out there
in the hollow.
Make me think
of tomorrow.
Put your hand out
and accept the strap.
Something that’s not
been done for decades.

We are the memory.
The thing that reveals
the whole truth.
We shine a light.


The Endless Shutters Closing

The flashbulbs.
The endless shutters closing.
The impenetrable
series of intrusions,
closing in.
The migration
from small town,
into the city.
The rainfall falling.
Pitta patta, pitta patta.
Closing windows
to keep out the rain.
Drying wet hair
with a towel.
Smelling sweet fragrant
otherness in the air.
Flashbulbs and endless
shutters closing.


The Disappearance

A surreptitious sleight of hand.

He was there,
until he wasn’t.
There were rumours
he was somewhere.
Somewhere nice everyone hoped.
But the news was sketchy
and quite imprecise.
A story circulated,
he’d been quietly let go.
Another told of treatment,
being brusquely refused.
His dog was destroyed
or found a new home.
His children they lived,
far from home.
It was weeks before we
found out where he had gone-
deported back to the place,
he’d been born.
Fifty years of living,
snubbed out in an instant.
A blessed life blighted
by a deliberate deletion.