Petals

•July 15, 2011 • 4 Comments

Pieces of broken bodies fall around me

Like funeral petals

Fallout from friendships

Faced with the nuclear option of my madness

I gouge through gobs of flesh

That were once lips dribbling easy promises

Scouring for something so solid

As a splinter of bone to support my soul

I laughed and you loved it

And then I laughed too much and in the wrong places

And I could not stop

I cried and you loved it

And then I cried too much and in the wrong places

And I could not stop

Down I dig through gristle hair and teeth

Scratching at sinew for a single fingerhold of empathy

There is a solid something

Somewhere

There is a neon dawn a strobing sunrise

Somewhere

There is a noise that is not the scraping of my skull

Somewhere

But not here

Gardening as Rot

•July 14, 2011 • Leave a Comment

The new thing is weeds. Energetic daisy-looking weeds that come straight up, unbowed and fast so you feel like you are miniature and speeded up. Like you are watching the stubble of the ghetto.
- Don’t call it the ghetto! Who are you like? Who are you? I wouldn’t dare! Eating chick peas? What’s a fucking chick pea? Eat some proper chicken, that’s what you wanna do! I would NOT dare!
The other new thing is that instead of wood on your sealed up windows you have this cheese grater metal.
It’s hard to spray paint on it and it stops you from getting inside the old house and doing the things you want to do in there. Like drugs. Like cuddling up with a scabby girl.
But you *can* spray paint on it if you stand there in broad daylight and just plain DO it for long enough. It looks different. Faded and only half there. That can be an effect though.
So why the metal faced, metal eyed house husks now? Does it really keep people out? When bored, if unemployed people want to get in, they eventually will.
Is it reusable?
Carbon neutral?
The weeds are carbon neutral. They are going to let this whole town go genuine jungle. We’ll compost with our corpses. We’ll do our joyrides on okapis and aurochs. Some kids with holes in their earlobes will work overtime making us carbon neutral beer so we keep running.
I walk down the old street and I see these daisy things everywhere. Maybe they are heroin poppies.
Either way it looks like they are a week from taking over and making the houses look like strange interlopers. When I was a kid, people cut their grass. People didn’t let the grass out by the road get full of strange flora.
All the mams and dads were the same age All the dads looked like Steve Marriot. They all got themselves pregnant and got relocated at about the same time. They formed a community after a few years of fucking and fighting and fucking while fighting and fighting while fucking, And drinking,
And they would hit each others children and it never got to look like this.
Then again, looking down at the magnificent clustered crystal of this little flower… this only white thing I have ever seen…I think the council used to take care of all this. The zoo keepers. Continue reading ‘Gardening as Rot’

Love Pig

•May 23, 2011 • 4 Comments

Simon helped me load my slide reel

Simon carried my heavy portfolio

Simon wrote my dissertation

Simon prized the lid off my jam jar

Simon would do anything for me

he would eat dog shit if I asked him

he let me treat him like dirt

I let him fuck me with a ladle

he stripped me naked in the kitchen

in front of a full-length mirror

love pig was standing outside

watching us through the window

hidden by the begonias

wanking and moaning my name

Simon was sitting behind me

displaying me to the mirror

fondling my softer than yours skin

losing himself in my reflection

coating me in good cream cheese

plucking my pussy hairs

slowly easing the ladle

in the late night kitchen – lights blazing – off his face on cheap drugs

stirring me with the ladle

we were lapping it up

I only let him fuck me once with his willy

now he wants to do it again

he wants to whisk me to the sea-side

for a never-ending dirty weekend

last night he was bawling his eyes out

said he can never believe a word I say

now he’s performing on my doorstep

he’s gift-wrapped and blowing me kisses

he’s galloping round my front garden

pretending he’s a fire-breathing goat

he’s hammering and spicing his meat

he’s slobbering over her next-door’s feet

he’s covering his dick in tin foil

he’s tying red ribbons in his hairy

he’s poking his dick in my letterbox

he’s spunking all over my hall

I want the one who was watching

The Magnificent Inheritance

•May 6, 2011 • 8 Comments

When I first came back home there were kids who pursued me. I can’t even write down what they said to me. If I wrote it down and then one day this computer broke down and I had to take it to the shop then I would get arrested and put in the special wing. They said it like a kid might have asked a grown-up for a cigarette when I was a kid. Or like a pretend kid in a comic when I was a kid would have blown a raspberry at their neighbour.
I stopped jogging.
Being afraid of children was the sign either of the apocalypse, or your own breakdown. I went with the simpler explanation.
I lived in the empty house. I didn’t fill it up. Didn’t bother it.
I slept with all the lights on. I remembered the feeling of getting burgled again and again when we were young. The worst part was just before you ran down the stairs with your dad and just after. Running down the stairs was alright.
Or maybe the worst part was when your brother cried for “no reason” when it was all done. Or maybe it was the stony face of your dad.
Maybe it was sitting in the empty room with the lights on and new dust patterns where the telly and record player had been. Tellys were big back then. Burglars worked hard. Now they probably run away with an iPhone or something.
Maybe that is why they kill you in your sleep now. An excess of energy,.
I had been around the world, quietly. Now it was okay that I didn’t fit in. When I went for a drink with my mates they bought weird stuff, cocktails etc. I think they were trying to make me feel better.
“Are you gonna sell the house then?”
“Yeah. Do you think someone will buy it?”
“Yeah. It’s a house. Someone will do it up. Some lad with a big dog. Why don’t you get a dog.”
“But I’m selling the house.”
“I think you’re still gonna want a dog, mate.”
There is a samurai sword in the big bedroom. I used to think it was real. Dangerous. Now I am not sure. It’s definitely a nice souvenir. I think it could be sharpened.
This and a fake watch and piles of clothes and papers that I can’t handle: The Legacy. And leather jackets that I give to one of their old friends every time one comes round. I have 21 cans of Carling Black Label left in the fridge. And 3 leather jackets. Some have flakey elbows. Others don’t, but make me look like a giant wallet if I ever try one on. I am a man who can’t wear leather jackets or any kind of hat. Or sunglasses.
I don’t jog but why not go for a walk? I walk down the old road to town. Pakistani kids won’t bother me, will they? They watch me, though. Two big lads follow me down to the old market place where the clock stands. It is at the exact same time it was last time I was here and I was 4 foot 1. Infrastructure investment is low here.
The Pakistani boys sit on the bench next to me, drinking Tango.
“Alright, mate,” they say.
“Alright, lads,” I say.
“You from here, mate?” they ask.
I say yes. I can’t ask them. It would be insensitive.
“What do you lads do?”
“Nowt.”
“Nowt. Yeah…you do nowt. Do you ever go to that Chinese place and get the curry chips?”
Was that insensitive? The curry.
“Charlie’s? Yeah, mate. Sound, mate. Chung gau feio ming chung!”
“I’m an orphan, lads.”
“Sorry to hear that , mister.”
“It’s my own fault. I thought I had to go around the world. It took a long bloody time lads. When I got back, I had an empty house. But the world is spinning round, innit? I could have stayed. I could have learned Chinese with you lads at Charlie’s.”
“You on the smack, dad?”
“Nah. I’m not on the smack.”
Then I start laughing. I’m laughing because smack is like leather jackets and hats and sunglasses to me.
“You’re on the smack, mate!”
“Hey listen, lads. Have you got like uncles and aunties and stuff in your house?”
“Cause we’re Pakistanis?”
They stand up and walk away.
“I have an empty house!”
I go home.

Coastal by Quiet Riot Girl

•April 19, 2011 • 10 Comments

Coastal, by Quiet Riot Girl

The cliffs are falling into the sea. Nobody lives there anymore, except for the foolhardy, the suicidal, and the romantic (though suicides are the most romantic of all). Everyone else has moved inland. So if tourists insist on walking there, and do so at their peril, they stumble across abandoned cottages along the way. Some look like they have been left suddenly, as if the occupant woke up one morning and sensed something ominous, and just packed some belongings into a bag and walked out, forever. One of the cottages near Mariners’ Head still has the table set for breakfast. The edge of the cliff is approaching fast and soon the teapot, the plates and the butterdish will tumble to their end.

The village is still intact, but people are making plans already. The coast road is blocked off and the area has been put on the urgent rehousing list. Residents have always been resilient, and stubborn too. They won’t leave without a fight. But how can you fight the ocean?

Life is mundane, apart from the overhanging threat of destruction. People mind their own business, do what has to be done. That kaleidoscope of colour that briefly appeared, even here right at the very edge of the world, full of MTV and Internet Porn and Kinky Sex Stories and Anne Summers parties, came and went and disappeared without a trace, like the houses that fell into the sea. Sex is for procreation now, and occasionally to keep warm on winters’ nights. The ‘modern’ seems like a distant memory.

But the men of the village are haunted. They do not speak about her, but they know about the girl that wanders the clifftops, who occupies one of the abandoned cottages. They know she can take them back there, without warning, back to that era of debauchery, of pleasure and pain, of instant gratification, extremity of feeling. Sometimes, against their better judgements, some of them even go looking for her. One man went onto the cliffs at night and never returned. The official story is that he drowned, but the men of the village are not so sure.

In the pub, the only place where the air is still full of hope and possibilities, conversations can be stopped dead, just by mention of the cliffs. A stranger might think it is because of the situation everyone is in, and the women assume that too. But the men know different. They will look down, into their pint glass, fall into silence, laugh nervously and change the subject. It is almost as if she has visited them right there.

This is where ‘rumours’ would come in useful. Many ghost stories include the line ‘rumour has it’ somewhere or other. But there are no rumours this time. Just shadows under some men’s eyes, a sudden flash of life in someone’s expression. A sigh. It is not much in the way of evidence. But it all adds up.

When she walks in her long white cotton gown her blonde hair blowing behind her in the breeze, her mind is empty. When a figure approaches her along the path, coming towards her, not seeing her at first, she does not know what will happen next. When he sees her and stops, hesitant, maybe even fearful, she just turns her back on him and starts to retrace her steps. Sometimes he follows her, sometimes he turns back himself. Not all men are curious.

When they arrive at the cottage she walks in through the door silent. When he follows her in the atmosphere changes. There is no turning back now. When she hears him gasp, at the sight before him, the game has begun. But still, she doesn’t know how it will turn out. The room is bare except for a heavy wooden table and two chairs. On the table is a pile of equipment, laid out neatly. Whips, canes, rope, blindfold, handcuffs, hoods, chains. And a knife. On the wall of the room there are various hooks. He takes it all in.

She removes her nightdress to reveal a pale naked form. She looks at him with such intent, that he is infected with it. Suddenly he knows what to do. Anything could happen, but now it is up to him what that anything is. All those years of abstinence, or worse, of boring married missionary sex, are enough to bring the animal to the surface of any man. This one is roaring and growling already. He handcuffs her hands behind her back in one deft move. He pushes her towards the wall and holds her there. She feels his breath on her neck. She feels the coldness of the stone against her skin. She feels him pull her hair and whisper, ‘bitch’. It has been such a long time but he hasn’t forgotten. He is angry about what he missed. He is going to make her pay.

Fucking a ghost is like fucking a woman, but quieter, and more exciting. She is a blank canvas. He knows he can do what he wants with no comeback.  That’s what turns him on. Imagine if there were never any consequences to anybody’s actions? This is how he approaches the situation. On the table the knife glistens temptingly. His conscience is a clean slate. And he always wanted to know if ghosts bleed.

It turns out they do.

By the time he has finished with her, there is nothing much left but blood. It only takes one cut, horizontal across her perfect belly, to open the floodgates. It cascades in crimson rivers out of her over her skin and onto the knife, his hands, his naked body. She does not make a sound, but her expression freezes in terror and pain. Good.

He doesn’t know quite why but he bends over her then and licks the blood pouring out from her body. He swallows the thick, metallic liquid as if it were some kind of elixir. It is giving him new life, restoring his sense of being a man. He almost laughs. To think he’d forgotten he was a man at all. He won’t forget now. He licks and drinks and swallows. He cannot get enough.

It all happened gradually, so most people didn’t see it coming. Bit by bit, sex became sanitised, criminalised, censored, stolen. The newspapers and internet were full of phrases like ‘pornification’ and ‘sexualisation’. Once there is a word for something it tends to be closely followed by action. Far away from this coastal village, in suburbs of cities, in boardrooms and courtrooms, men, the dirty dogs, were being castrated, figuratively speaking. Laws were being made. Women were crying ‘rape’ and ‘harassment’ with no provocation. A man only needed to look at a woman a certain way and he could be locked up. So men started to keep their desire to themselves. Pornography became a pleasure of the past. Even wanking seemed dangerous, subversive.

He didn’t pay much attention then, he was too worried about his livelihood, about the oncoming disaster, but now he knows. His manhood has been eroded. He wants it back before it falls into the sea forever.

When he has taken his fill he fucks her one last time. He finds her cunt, drenched in blood and shoves himself in. His mind is empty except for an overpowering feeling of victory. He feels like some kind of hero. He pounds her corpse-like body and empties his sperm into her. He feels so potent he thinks this alone might bring her back to life.

But the ghost remains limp and sodden on the floor. He pulls out his cock and goes over to the washbasin in the corner of the room. He washes himself as best he can. The water is freezing. The blood is starting to congeal and dry. He dresses quickly. A flicker of doubt wanders over him, but he brushes it aside. This is a ghost story. They always turn out the same.

As he leaves the cottage, he glances back and regrets it immediately. The carnage is horrific and it makes him retch. It  might be a slasher movie. The final girl is not looking too clever. But still, intoxicated with his own power, he strides back up the coast path confidently. She had it coming. They had it coming. He is a man again at last.

When the police knock on his door the next morning, he is surprised to see them. It’s not that he thinks it was a dream. He can still taste her blood in his mouth. He can still feel the tension in her flesh, as it resisted then yielded to the pressure from the knife.

He knows it happened. But he can’t see how he’s done anything wrong. She was a ghost. He was helping his fellow man. He was saving them from crumbling and falling into the sea. He explains all this but they don’t believe him. The police are all women these days. They never believe a man. He must have forgotten the rules.

After it is all over, after he has been taken to the city, to ‘justice’ (capital punishment has made a comeback and this is an open-and-shut case), after the remains of her body have been removed, and the equipment taken as evidence. Everything goes back to how it was before. The cliffs keep on eroding, the villagers remain anxious and cautious. More cottages are abandoned. The ocean is making its inexorable way towards them.

But something has changed. Men start to talk to each other. Instead of staring into the bottoms of their pint glasses, they share a glance, they ask each other questions. They tell each other what’s on their minds. And when they go home to their wives, to their girlfriends, they look them straight in the eye. They take what’s theirs. The land has shifted slightly. The terrain is different.  

Rumour has it, (for rumours are allowed to flourish now) that his ghost walks the cliffs at night. The men call him ‘hero’ under their breaths.  But they don’t approach him if they see him. Unless they are foolhardy, suicidal, or romantic. That is another story.

By Quiet Riot Girl

Editor, Games Perverts Play: www.gamespervertsplay.wordpress.com

Homepage: www.quietgirlriot.wordpress.com

How One Of Them Remembers Their Conversation

•April 12, 2011 • 14 Comments

Typical!

How can you say that to me?

Easy…

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Can’t you see?

No, I need more. I need you to feel

I’d throw everything overboard-

-I’m drowning already

-Just to be with you

I’m touched-

No really. Let’s move things forward

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

Really

Touched

Really

Touched

Really-really

T-t-t-t-tou-ched

No real-

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No real-No real

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Easy

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Easy-easy-easy

Ree-ee-eally

Feel

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Feel-typical

No ree-ee-eally-throw

More-typical-drowning

Can’t-thr-thr-thr-throw

I’m drow-I’m drow-I’m drow

See

Feel-Need

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I’M ALL CUT UP

 

The New Libertines. Year Zero on tour in 2011

•March 31, 2011 • 1 Comment
Katelan Foisy, who epitomises New Libertinism, in action with eight cuts gallery and Year Zero for last year’s show Lilith Burning
Last year the world let us put on some shows. This year they’ve even invited us to some festivals. But don’t worry, we’ve not crossed over to the festival mainstream – we’re talking fringes and sone of the fabbest shows in town.

“We need writing that serves up the whole of life, in the smallest microcosms maybe, single truths told in single voices, but told in the full – the ugly and the beautiful; the hopeful and the despairing; the angry and the aspiring; that wrings art, words, life itself until they offer up every last secret, every hidden pain, every unexpected and delightful pleasure; that gives life in the full. Free from judgement. Free from taboo. Free from pretence.” (Dan Holloway, The New Libertines)

eight cuts gallery is delighted to announce its 2011 New Libertines tour. The New Libertine movement, if it can be labelled a movement, stands for human experience in its glorious, messy, complex entirity, and stands against everything that is blank, bleak, and brutal, one dimensional or slick in contemporary culture, especially current literary culture. With roots that spread to burlesque, Beat, fin de siecle France and ecstatic mystics before slapping its influences around the face with a knuckle-dusting of postmodern wit and Modernist anger, New Libertinism is a celebration of light in dark corners, desire in the face of boredom, despair hidden beneath the underskirts of affluence – of everything it means to be human.

4 April 2011, Albion Beatnik Bookstore, Oxford, 6pm FREE (Not the Oxford Literary Festival)

4 June 2011, Stoke Newington Literary Festival, 4-6pm at Baby Bathhouse, entry £4

13 June 2011, Albion Beatnik Bookstore, Oxford, 6pm as part of Oxfinge, entry £4

more dates tba incl The Literature Lounge at Covent Garden Poetry Cafe

Who’s involved

lucy ayrton
slam poet extraordinaire and hammer and tongue regular

penny goring


commander-in-chief of the new libertine movement, author of the forthcoming collection of shorts and poems zoom zoom

anna hobson


star of oxwords’ no reading alone and the life force of oxford creative writers

dan holloway


literary death match winner, author of the man who painted agnieszka’s shoes, contributor to transgressive anthologies. your mc for the night, and for your sins

federay holmes

marc nash

experimenter, word-twister, raconteur, friday flasher, typographer, author of A, B & E

renee sigel

wonderful poet and part of the ground-breaking art and poetry shawback redemptions collaboration

joan barbara simon

author of mut@tus and long time walk on water, playwright and performer extraordinanaire 

helen smith


author of alison wonderland; “at the very least a minor phenomenon” (the times)

anne witchard

Anne Witchard teaches at the University of Westminster. She is the author of Thomas Burke’s Dark Chinoiserie: Limehouse Nights and the Queer Spell of Chinatown and co-editor of Gothic London: Place, Space and the Gothic Imagination. She is currently working on a book called Lao She, London and China’s Literary Revolution which aims to redress the sidelined story of China’s place in literary modernism.

Susanna Starling performs at last year’s Lilith Burning

with music from the one and only experimental electronic artist Rabid Gravy and double bass phenomenon Susanna Starling, host of the legendary Queen of Clubs Cabaret

 
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