The Reflection of my Patchwork Skin

This week I’m going to be reading at not one but two gigs – Text in the City, which I’m putting on this Thursday in Oxford Castle, and Grit Lit in Brighton on Friday. Both are showacses of urban fiction, and I realised I haven’t written anything about the city in a while. So I did, and I’ll be starting both sets with it.

I haunt the street to build a life

From other people’s pieces

And souls switch off the lights while bodies do their thing

And skins naked under neon veins and leather

Sweat the madman’s shakes

And snake man screams falsetto dreams

And basement prophetesses roll their eyes

And loose-limbed priests shriek hymns at peeling skies

And jacked-up housemaids howl Baudelaire at their whores

And off key ends of torch songs promise velvet lashes

And louche ladettes in lamé queues stub half-finished cigarettes

And slickers slip one another roofies and condoms and lies

And lips wrapped up in chat slap noodle sauce on Ferragamos

And a student passes the porno door for the fifteenth time

And chalk and chucked up chips duet

And anxious eyes feel out the night for open doorways

And anxious hands are fast behind

And poetry collectives cut anarchist zines to paste in booths

And cologned and sweaty suits pass them up for Frida, firm and forty double D

And in windows the reflection of my patchwork skin

And I can’t go home.

I would not let me in

~ by yearzerowriters on November 28, 2010.

14 Responses to “The Reflection of my Patchwork Skin”

  1. Sound work. That last line is perfect.

  2. a list + free use of AND = YES!
    Pen

  3. and I get sick every time I delete an AND and I think I will stop doing it and I left more than I usually would in Darklings and starting sentences with AND makes perfect sense because there is always something else before that particular something.

  4. I use quite a lot of ands too and I know it works in terms of rhythm and when you are writing prose it changes something and almost brings in poetry where poetry shouldn’t really be and I like that sense of cheating and I know I can do what I want anyway and I know all this and yet still there is a but. But I am not sure what the but is.

    I like the last line too! And the contrast between the porno and the suits.

  5. That was a beautiful and dreamy and gorgeous read. Thank you, Dan.

  6. ‘And’ is a brilliant word when used with quality, as it means more quality, like this. There’d be someone on autho telling you to avoid repetition.
    Really like it Dan. Good luck with the readings!

  7. Thanks, both🙂
    Yes, Simon, I can imagine the comments now…

  8. Beautiful. My favorite line: “And jacked-up housemaids howl Baudelaire at their whores”

  9. you know what I meant by housemaids, though?

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