You have my word

One word can change your life.

I am more courage than strength, I think

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I am not my monster. I am not a gift of violence from fists my ancestors couldn’t hide. I am not ashamed of my demons.

I am not afraid to command the devil to do his darkest on my dark days.

I am not defeated. I am not the soldier with a sword in his flesh. I am not my own Jesus, with blood and water running from my sides. I am not your saviour. 

I am not bound to yesterday. The present is my means of moving forward. But I am not a slave. I am at no one’s mercy.

I am not desperate; I am hurting. I am not alone but my hands are tired.

I am not yesterday’s tears. I am not a body of water – moving, just to stop from standing in fear.

I am all strength. Well, mostly I think. I am more courage than strength. I am not broken. I am brave.

I am learning. I guess I’m somewhere in between.

I am not certain. I am trying to believe that I am capable of more than just the in and out of air. I am music and air.

I am not syllables caught mid windpipe.

I am breathing fluid fire set to burn the monster.


A bush on fire doesn’t mean you’ve found God


Where there is smoke, there is fire, but there is no God.

Listen carefully and you might survive this inferno.

Hold your breath and don’t choke on tears.

No one is here to hear you.

You don’t recognise the shape of your skin.

Extinguish your incense; smother your flames. Burning doesn’t mean power; a bush on fire doesn’t mean you’ve found God. A fire cannot burn in the dark; a fire cannot burn without air. Fire is light; it fights the dark. They can’t exist together. The flames consume the dark. This light. This cancer. This burning lung. Tarred ventricle. Gasp. This is your prayer. You are ablaze. Perhaps God is here after all.

Here between the walls as the sea begins to break. God’s subject raised a rod to make a path – part the mass – split the body of water… split the body of… split the body… Split the body. Break the body with a rod. Beat it until it is two. Two parts; too broken. Now walk through. Escape. Slaves flee! Be free. Beat, beat, be free. Beat, beat, be free. You can’t beat God into me.

He might be here, but he is not with me.

Playing devil’s advocate or devil playing in the desert. Feed yourself with these rocks. Bow to me. Leap from this temple and trust them to catch you with their rituals and self-righteousness. Do not tempt me. Get behind me. I will starve. My body is your bread. My blood is your wine. Drink. Have your fill from these dry bones. It is for you. This is what you do. Depart, devil. Depart, demons. Depart. Apart. Restart.

In the beginning, God. Amen. So be it. The land and sea and sky and dark that was night and my mind. And light as day and dreams and hope. 66 books and we still cannot live in peace.

My tears are the water. I pour them like wine. This time they are worth more than gold. I’ve sold my body too many times to earn my worth from the hands that hold me. I have let myself go too many times, like pearl before swine. My body is not for them to cast lots and divide between men, women, fools, thieves, ghosts, lovers. My clothes will remain even after blood has been spilled, the stone rolled away.

Where are you now? The tomb is empty. The womb is empty. Virgin Mary. Quite contrary. Weighed and measured. Found wanting. Not enough. Not big enough. Not strong enough. I am David. More than a book. More than five stones to slay the monster. More than conquerors. Conquered. Captured. Christ.

You don’t recognise the shape of your skin. So I mark it and hope it’ll be come more familiar. I call courage. I call the present. I call my body mine and it is so.



I will never call you raven, black bird

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You are the night sky when I close my eyes. This is where I find rest. Your chest cages not one, but two hearts – a sacred space for dancing beneath the stars of all you are. Vast canvas, stippled with magic that’s been missed too easily by those who only chased bright lights. But not you – I could never have missed you. Miss you, yes, but.

Not a chance I could have walked right by without the magic and the moonlight calling out to me for one last love affair with darkness. Pure and peaceful shadow. Gentle. Warm, contrary to how it may look. Ebony grace, not startling or reckless. I will never call you raven, black bird.

While riddled with myths of death and despair, nevermore! – or at least not in this poem. You love all the hells out of me. I traded them in: others’ sins for your hands and my heartache for your skin. Black bird, sing your dark melody and use your wings in this dark dance beneath your evermore sky.

So I close my eyes not to sleep, but to wander in your dreams. Perhaps we’ll meet. When the days are too bright and burning with the busyness of doing, I’ll blink and you are there. When the sun forces shadows into spaces where there should only be music and air, you’ll be there.

My black bird. My night sky. My love affair. My dance; my song. My magic; my moon. It’s all you.

Body burrows between boundaries broken


My body is a country invaded by men who’ve stolen land and dreams bigger than they were given to take. Broken laws with no one in charge. Children starve when the hands that feed mouths are furrowed between legs.

My body is a country with immigrants burrowing under boundaries that were never meant to be crossed. Dirtied. Out of place. Running for their lives. I’ve been running for my life since he crossed the border. A nomad man. no man. mad man. Running. With just a fingerprint for a face and a grunt for a name.

It’s a shame that he travels alone. Even in a pack he is the odd one out. Even his family doesn’t call him their own. His wife hides her face. His children carry his–story. Something to show off. But not me.

I am his destination. A journey’s end, though he makes it every day. A self-fulfilling prophecy. Cause and effect. Means to an end. I am the means. I am the end. The end. End. End.

This is not the end.