Three Poems

These 3 poems were published in ‘BT1: A New Poets Code’ in 2005. The collection is no longer available.


Community Relations


Our next-door neighbour

cries herself to sleep every night.

We don’t know why.


The walls are thin

in these houses.

I’m sure she can hear us

when we make love.


We see her on the street

sometimes, on her way home

with the shopping.


She lives alone.

As far as we know, no-one

ever visits.

Not since we moved in, anyway.


She introduced herself

the day we arrived—

Josey is her name.


She knocked on our door,

told us her name, & said that

if there was anything we

ever needed,


anything at all,

to just let her know, to

just give her a shout.


Apart from the crying she doesn’t

make much noise.

She hoovers in the

evenings, every


evening. & sometimes,

late at night, she moves the

furniture in her bedroom around.


We don’t mind too much.

She gives us something to

talk about

before we go to sleep.



Love Song

I don’t know how to sing a love song.

I did once but I forgot.

Now I only whistle melodies

most of which are flat



I woke first and

found myself next to this strange girl

in this strange bed. Her


face was pale, almost

white. Even her lips—

which were opened slightly,

pouting in sleep.


Except, where her eyelids

ended and her eyelashes

began, there was a hint

of lilac.


It wasn’t make-up. It was

just the way she was



When she finally woke she

switched on the radio by the

side of her bed &

listened to the morning news.


She didn’t

speak to me, she barely

looked at me. She listened

until the news


was over then asked me

for a cigarette. I told her

we’d smoked the last of them


before we went to bed. She said

in that case, she was going

back to sleep.


I waited until she

closed her eyes

before I dressed to leave.




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