From the Vaults: The Funeral of Niobe

(So, uh, you guys aren’t cool with just an edit on the pantoum, are you? Didn’t think so. Well, there’s possibly a villanelle in the future, but in the meantime, have a sonnet, back from when I was figuring out how to write sonnets that made sense and were actually emotive to read.)

(Also, yes, the mistake re: Carthage/Sodom is deliberate.)

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From The Vaults: Proof of Existence

(This was my attempt, sometime last year, to write what I called ‘a narratological horror story’. The Bitter King was written with a similar thought process – the concept that narrative and narrative devices can be where true horror lie, not necessarily within plot.

The Bitter King, I feel, works better as an examination of our culture of celebrity worship, but Proof of Existence, my first attempt, is much closer to what I was attempting to achieve and is, if not actively horrific, then certainly unnerving.)

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From The Vaults: Tritina of Rosebuds and Blood

(Had another seizure this morning; don’t worry, I have a neuro appointment tomorrow, but most of the day was spent in bed, so you’re getting one from the vaults today: the first tritina I ever wrote. Don’t fret too much over the subject matter, I’m still happily dating my boy, but this was written when I was grumpy over a breakup, as I think is pretty clear from the choices I made in writing it.)

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From The Vaults: What To Do When The World Has Ended

(I wrote this exactly two years ago today: January 23rd 2014. Well, technically, I wrote it on January 24th, and I expect the tributes will start to flow tomorrow, given that I’m strictly speaking a day ahead, but the date in question (and doesn’t everything, when it all boils down, just come down to dates and words and the stories we choose to tell? But I digress) is the 23rd. It’s the date people remember, anyway, and here’s why:

For a period of about, oh, three years? I was involved in the Channel Awesome fan community. Don’t worry; it’s not overly-important. But one of the video producers for CA for a while was someone called Justin Carmichael, or Jewwario, and this poem was written on the day it was announced he had committed suicide.

I was never a huge fan, but I knew people who were, and watching the outcry prompted me to write this. It’s less about dealing with your own grief and more about dealing with other people’s. It is not, I feel, a very good poem, but it is how I was feeling at the time.

My own personal feelings on JW are…complicated for a variety of reasons. But that is a post for another time, when I’m braver and stronger and less afraid.)

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From The Vault: Ten Years Gone

(Posted at least partially to give evidence I write a format other than tritina/sestina. This was written when I was feeling particularly sad and grief-stricken, although there’s now a story behind this sonnet that makes me rather angry instead. But that is, perhaps, another sonnet.)

Nick, my brother, runs down the stairs, his feet

Beating out a rhythm, his fingers too

On floor and roof. Lawrence lingers in the

Lounge, playing games. My mother, high above,

Cooks dinner, and sings, and dances, while the

Stew bubbles. Father sits in his study

And smokes, and swears, and opens another

Beer. I write poetry in my room. But

That is ten years gone. Alone now, I spread

My arms and legs and listen

To the calls of tuis and kakas from

The kowhai tree outside my windowsill.


If I could reach far enough, I could bring

Them back to that day, now ten years gone.