What would you like me to publish?

On the understanding that I count the self-published books as already done, what would you like to see next?

I have already shown a publisher six poems and a couplet -
The Laughing Day,
Lion Girl,
Untitled (Inch by inch),
Do No Harm,
That Which Doesn't Kill Us Doesn't Kill Us
and Eyebrows Up And Noses In The Air.

Not that I've actually found out what the publisher wants yet. But they want to talk to me, so that's a start! Please, intarwebs, tell me what to think?


Inspired by Facebook groups, of all things

Let us avenge ourselves upon the damned
And in the silent hollows of their heads
We'll prove them right about the world and all its hatred
We'll prove them right about the pain that never ends
We'll prove to them decisions are all fated
We'll prove to them they never had a friend
And when we are avenged and they are still damned
It will still be silent in the hollows of their heads

We can join them then.

Lion girl

You golden-headed white-blonde girl
I have held you in the palm of my hand
I have blown you away on the warm wind of my breath
I have caught you gently in my fingertips
I have sent you flying out over the world
You will land and put down roots and grow

Dandelion girl
You are strong and free and beautiful
And everywhere I turn there is you

(no subject)

"This is the last day I will ever be four," she said.

"That's right. You'll be fourteen and twenty-four and thirty-four, even seventy-four, but never just four again."

"Wow. You said some big fours."


"No! Don't hold my hand, I am FIVE."


Five years old and the world unfolds
For her heart so warm and her soul so bold
And the blood in my veins runs icy cold
As she walks away from me.

Her legs are strong and her feet are sure
But she never tells me what she has to endure
And the sound of her voice is strong and pure
As she talks, but not to me.

Five years growing apart and away
Stronger and lovelier every day
And there's nothing at all that I can say:
This is who she's meant to be.

Her trust is strong and her hope is clear
Wilder and gentler every year
And the way she is is precious and dear
She can always come back to me.


A mother, to me,
Is the one who lets you go
Takes you back
Lets you go
Buys your boots

A mother, to me,
Is the one who helps you grow
Lets you shrink
And retrench
Tends your roots

A mother, to me,
Is the one who stays behind
But whose hand is always open,
Strong, outstretched.

A mother, to me,
Doesn't simply come along -
But somehow, she never needed
To be fetched.

Do no harm

I do not want to bring harm to the world
I am seeding it with joy,
and the joy is made of daughters

I do not want to bring death to the world
but in each life I give it I give it a new death

I do not want to bring pain to the world
I beg forgiveness when I do, is that enough?
When I make bread
Up-ending a whole bag of flour into my largest pan
And filling my largest measure with water, milk, and eggs,
I mix it with a wooden spoon, so's not to harm the pan,
And take the flour-bag and the milk carton to be recycled
So's not to harm the planet.
I do not want to leave harm unhelped in the world
I bring a bag for litter and bring home what's not my own

I do not want to leave death unmourned in the world
But the weight of all the grief is sometimes too much to bear

I do not want to leave pain unhealed in the world
I can kiss a bruise, blow on a graze, but it's always so much more
When I make bread
I dig holes under the flour, for the water to flow in,
And mix it from the bottom up,
Last of all folding the dough over the traces of yeast and sugar on top.
I knead life into my bread
And watch it grow

To knock it back is necessary and disappointing
Flatten the yeast's effort
And fold it through again
So that it can grow back up
Big enough for baking

When all the yeast is baked to death
The bread of life is ready.

Conflating two people I didn't like much, oops

I bet you think your kid is smart
You've taught her well to act the part
Hurry now, it's time to start
Using the Rod of Correction

How well she knows to chant and parrot
Stick will do more good than carrot
What do pathetic triumphs merit?
Using the Rod of Correction!

In case you think it's too exciting
To read what your preschooler's writing
I'm here to tell you, she's inviting
Using the Rod of Correction!

Blame them, shame them, for their brains,
Call them dehumanising names,
They'll outthink you, just the same,
You and your Rod of Correction.

Firm foundations, strong stone walls

You're not The One decreed by fate,
Our love was not ordained,
But you're the one I chose back then,
And the one I choose today.

You're not Cupid's target struck,
Nor prophecy foretold,
But I chose you when we were young,
And I'll choose you when we're old.

It is not random chance, our love,
But a choice that we both make,
And the work we've done together
Has built love which cannot break.

(no subject)

She's seven tenths of me tall
She's two fifths and a bit of my weight
She's a sixth of my years,
She's all I hold dear,
She's my girl, all her own, and it's great