Half rhymes


I keep coming back to this old one and crying to myself because I am awful like that.

Originally posted on Palimpsest:

Half rhymes on a distant love: variation on an ode.

If words must be my lips, I’ll speak to you,

And covet you with whispers to the skin.

Though this may be the kiss that just won’t do,

It must do ’til then.

If memories are hands, remove the glove:

And let me glide the wonders of your face

With gentlest touch. Though this is not the love

That stands so close,

If distance is the passion, send me far

And wide away, to will that passion great:

If absence is the fondest, I won’t fear

That furthest place,

And if words must be my lips, I’ll write them slow,

And covet them like whispers to your skin.

Though this may be the kiss that just won’t do,

It must do ’til then.

I do love a good ode don’t I? This is really about the conflict between a…

View original 102 more words

The Justice Secretary on Judicial Review: Five Basic Misconceptions

Speaking (with my usual biases) as a strong believer in common law constitutionalism, a despiser of Tories, a supporter of the role of judicial review and a former student of Dr Elliott, I recommend this to all UK readers who take any interest in law or politics. It’s not really “poetry” – but then again maybe it is. I dunno. Read it.


The Justice Secretary on Judicial Review: Five Basic Misconceptions.

The Wine’s Duet

If wine were a voice, I would so long to listen

To fine, red lips and ripeness in the tone,

The tasteful sound soon sifted to decision,

And soon foregone.


If wine were a song, I’d long to intertwine

Its colours with mine. I’d learn it from the tongue,

Roll round its fullest music, and begin

That song as one.

Perfumed Filters

We took it, purposively, as a testament

To our very being there, under the sun:

Idle cigarettes, a vacant pose,

Sunglasses, smiles, green of dappled lights

Shadowing us. And there and then, as we captured

The image, you gave it a sepia filter

As though sunlight itself was insufficient

To bring the living memory to life.

So you named us, chose us, shared us presently;

Gave a caption to what had only seconds

Before been a moment of happy wordlessness;

And placed a rose-tinted perfume to the memory

Of a moment from which we had yet to fully awaken.

This is really all about the present generation of insta-nostalgia. Photographs are not relics, or keepsakes. I am unsure what they are, now. 


So that, holding it so tight, I could not simply

Let go of the breath, and it grasped itself

Like a knot about my chest and caught me in it

And I could not cross a bridge, or through a tunnel,

Or past any lonesome grave but keep it in

As a child might, told to keep it deeper down

For fear of rule-breaking, could not hope to gasp

For fear of gasping, could not save myself

But breathed in, and in, and in.


Heavy-hearted and lightheaded hold,

Released me in a touch. I felt its wide

Release, like breathing out. Like lost control,

And laughter, honest laughter – which after all,

Is the most perfect form of breathlessness.

And smiling in reprieve, I thought, back then:

How could it last, that lasting? For how long

Could I have kept that need for keeping, so?

And wondered that, as we must when breathing in

Prepare to laugh, when things are closely kept

It must be in the hope of letting go.



I occasionally undergo episodes of anxiety which, although acute in the first instance, soon aggregate to a formless, suffocating miasma. It does become quite difficult even to remember to breath: and particularly, to breath out. I find that the most delicious sedatives, those things which truly loosen the hold I keep upon myself, are laughter, my partner, and saccharine pop music. Each to their own, of course. 

Winter’s Breath

And, as my breath froze, I took to admiring the
Calligraphy of frost on window panes,
Scratched spider-webs, ice-like, as I
Passed dim and sleepy rows of quiet houses
With every surface re-conceived as a tableau
For the life of a frost. Though the air was still,
It sang with a cold truth, caught by long-cast sun,
Pertaining to its chill and clear solemnity
And the breath before me paled to its perfection.

Saturday Morning

In my unnoticed wakening, I felt

The loving hold of dreamy sheets

As I uncurled myself about them.


Daylight had settled in, inviolate

Shining through the curtains – still closed –

And heaven knew, I could not care to rise.


My softness had sunken through my form,

My skin, my very bones, happily abed;

And that brief delay was the gift of its perfect morning.



Just a little something I half-dreamt up.