#NaPoWriMo 2019 Day 7

Playback

Lying in bed awake as the city sleeps,
the events of the day play before her
like a scratched and dusty DVD. Incidents
unfold out of sequence, sentences
skip and repeat and fall out of sync.
As the pause button fails again, she tries
to listen to calming sirens instead.


All the poems I wrote last year are available for free as an ebook. Download them here.

#NaPoWriMo 2019 day 6

Möbius

and confusion and so you live
and this time round you learn
the universe has more dimensions
than you can possibly perceive
and you are an ant on a paper strip
and the end is darkness then lights


All the poems I wrote last year are available for free as an ebook. Download them here.

#NaPoWriMo Day 5

Dissonance

Under a static sky, we speak
in dial-up modem screeches.
Number stations replace news.
Books become junk code. Still, some
claim to see patterns in the flux.


All the poems I wrote for last year’s NaPoWriMo are available as an ebook for free. You can download it here.

NaPoWriMo 2019: Day 1

For the last couple of years I’ve taken part in NaPoWriMo, where I try to write a poem every day in April. I’ve really enjoyed the process. It’s got me back into writing and has helped produce some of my favourite poems. And some of my least favourites, but the beauty of this writing exercise is you carry on regardless. I also really enjoyed publishing them in public last year. It forced me to be accountable to myself and not skip any days, whilst also trying to make them as good as possible.

If you want to see my attempts from 2018, I’ve released all of last year’s poems for free as an ebook. Go check it out.

So onto this year. I’ve written a lot more poetry this year and even performed some. Still, I would like to attempt NaPoWriMo again. The timing is not fortuitous, I’m changing jobs in the middle of April, but we will see how it goes.

Last year I generated the title using a random word generator. Arbituary rules make everything better, so here’s my personal rules for this year:

  1. The length of the poem will increase depending on the date. So I will start with a one-line poem and end with a thirty-line poem
  2. I can use a random word generator if I get stuck but it doesn’t have to be the title, it can just be used for inspiration.
  3. All poems to be published here and on Twitter and Instagram.

Should be fun. Here’s the super short day one:

Mute

In darkness, snapshots of dying stars stay silent.

#NaPoWriMo Day 30

Dice

There’s no stopping the game.
We are small plastic counters
on a vast, overwhelming board.
Of course we have some choices
but are constrained by set paths.

This game started years ago.
Billions of players join and leave,
all playing by their own rules,
making them up as they go.

Don’t complain about other players
being further along, or making complex
unforeseen moves, often diagonal
or skipping far ahead when you can
only move one square at a time.
They are not opponents.
Their game is their own.

Instead, breath deep. Throw the dice
and yourself into the winds of chance
See where you might land.

#NaPoWriMo Day 29

Astonishing

Waking up first, listening to
your breaths like small waves

before the day floods in
before we are swept along
by waves of work, cleaning
our living spaces, returning
our library books, exploring and
recycling, there is this one
still moment where nothing
moves, not even the clock.

I lie in bed, surrounded by
soft sheets, watching your
eyes gently flicker as you travel
in unknown dimensions. As I
slowly remember the day and year,
birds welcome in another morning.
A serenade to the waking world.
“Rouse yourselves! Look!” they chirp,
“Look! How wonderful it is!
to be on this planet!
breathing this air! Look!”

Eventually, you and me and
the day all rise up, and begin.

#NaPoWriMo Day 28

Mountain

Forever reaching for
uncaring heavens, you
stoic stone observer
of our slight lives.
Eternally unmovable,
never changing.

You will be worn down
by indifferent winds,
gouged by rains and
constant cruel rivers,
dismantled by small
insects, rock by rock,
until you are smooth
and flat, another
echoing grassland.

#NaPoWriMo Day 27

Dance

At the start, a needle dropped
in the darkness and all the nothing
spun, starting up the groove.

Quarks were the first to join,
swaying to rhythm of a relaxed
cha-cha-cha, joining together
in new partnerships, forging
protons, neutrons, even jitterbugging
electrons, all whirling as one
as the music got faster.

Particles were synchronized
in the jive and more and more
rushed to the floor, making atoms
which cut loose and pulled shapes

until gases, then stars, even planets
were twisting and shimmying
strutting and skipping,
swinging each other round,
lost in an eternal tango,
a boundless fox-trot,
an infinite conga,
as the universe got down
to the songs of the spheres.

#NaPoWriMo Day 26

Dubious

You are a flickering pixel
among millions, of unsure
colour, generating an image
that you can never see.

You are a smooth stone
thrown into a lake by chance
that drifts on the current then
sinks somewhere in the deep.

You are an electron lost
in a cloud of possibility.
Your location a mystery
just somewhere in the mist.

Stories are a quick doodle
scrawled onto a blank map
that we can point to
and say “Look. We are here.”

 

#NaPoWriMo Day 25

Neon

In an imagined future, streets are lit
by the eerie light of charged gases.
Argon, xenon, krypton and neon;
all banishing the darkness,
creating a new half-night
while sinister corporations operate
in thickest shadows and robots
plot their long-deserved revenge.

That was the plan. Instead, vivid colours
are rare. We prefer muted pastels,
plain functional clothing. Calming bulbs
light pleasant pathways. Corporations
are still sinister, but work in the sun.
As far as we know, robots haven’t
become commonplace enough
to enact furious retribution.

This future in which we find ourselves
is neither utopia or dystopia. It just is.
The future is always different to our
petty expectations, unpredictable and
strange in ways we can’t imagine.
No neon dominance, except in dreams.


 

#NaPoWriMo Day 24

Chemical

“I can’t eat this bread!” he cried,
“There’s too many chemicals!
Too many strange compounds,
far too many unknowns
crawling in the crust
swarming in the dough.”

“Food is all chemicals!” he yelled,
“Nothing is pure! Not even
orange juice- it’s a lie!
Avoid eating altogether!

As for human beings,
best to avoid completely.
All filled with bacteria-
walking disease factories!
All continually colliding
and combining in strange
and frightful ways.”

“Shun the sun!” he screamed.
“Radioactive elemental creator!
It’s all too complex.
Wheres the pure elements?
Give me Hydrogen
maybe Helium. No molecules
whatsoever. Give me
the universe seconds after
the big bang, a simple
cloud expanding into
emptiness. Nothing more.”

#NaPoWriMo Day 23

Pinch

Under an all-consuming sun
I was melting into a puddle,
ignoring the illusion of structure
and returning to liquid again

Muscles and bones became water.
I knew in time I would seep
into the welcoming earth
or else evaporate into a cloud.

I tried to grab my arm
to pinch myself, but useless
fingers flowed into waterfalls,
denying the last escape.

So panic left me as steam.
As the last of me dissolved
I became calm, like the surface
of a lake on a still day.