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James McLaughlin


Four Sonnets


is a bitter choc every orange the
magenta its oyster tear torn eye
stabbed rheumy each leaf a copper
verdigris brass a patina flame
bluish into a fragrant green the
elms just can't stand it and
jag black stalks together every
green greened to burnish green
flake lemon on the underside of remorse
and the horizon parts in the
confines a country lane underfoot solid now
and squealing ice on leather or was it flesh
in the failing juice of a shadow
an inclination of something


fictitious place this edible bloom a
pomegranate auto fluorescent light
lilies lallygag in groves as the day
refuses to move yet a little everything here
is fixed quite still you feel it
the tar burns in cracks the river moves
the smell of cut crass cuts the road
bees are almost casual let it stand still
halt frame and let me confess
to another and ask for forgiveness and fall
on my knees and say I never meant it
it was not me honest guv
I was just a lad I never knew anything
of a word called consequence or guilt



philosophical doctrines to crepuscular fall
black surreality at each elevation seared
and this awful half indulged melancholy
peep peep through the leaves
will you ever retrace your steps your
acerbic brow that knows no passion
still I see you sitting there
knitting your blanket of pain
knuckles bleeding at the battle
and all for nothing but revenge
how far we will go to exact
to try and regain control when
when we could have been dancing
or walking in the unconditional air



and again let’s come back to this
always deep deep deep like your
skull will crack with the pressure of it
never a bright alluvial plain always
bones gnawed till they become soft
and warm and you can hold them
against your frozen cheek you
can feel the cold wetness touch
your sighs that become like pulses
and inside you know you are crying
you can only go on through the motions
washing another dish
rinsing the tea stains down the sink
hearing the plughole gawp




Copyright © James McLaughlin, 2016.