On the theme of opening up the back catalogue, there's a fund of undergraduate material grouped under the headings of The Defunct Corridor (first year poems), Doublethink (second year poems) and Single Honours (third year poems).

Overall they're not as artistically inept as they might have been and if I could distil them into a short collection there's a chance they might  add up to a reasonably good read for somebody, especially somebody at the stage of life I was when I wrote them.  Some examples:


Freshers' Week
 
Hedonists
exhort me
to party,

politicos
to fight the cuts

Everyone vies
for my
participation

 


Light Green Roof

The sparkle-studded light green roof
is in hard relief against a morning on the edge of frost.

The skeletal trees cast deep shadows
on grass that will soon be brittle.





Bad Lecture

People
shuffle
sigh

fiddle
with pens
zips, toggles

give up
trying
to take notes

stop waiting
for it
to get any better

 


Cubic

On Simon's cubic clock radio
Paul Weller's singing of the long hot summer
over a languid, liquid bass
suggesting hazy heat and lazy days.

Already false nostalgia for summers passed
gathers in my mind's corners
like the dark, inexplicable fluff
gathering in the corners of our room.




January Ground

I should have gone back to university today
but it was your funeral. I remember grandad's,
attending in my school uniform, you nearly collapsing
when the coffin slid in to the curtained furnace.
Marooned in chaos, your last years were composed
of life's thin scrapings. Kindly, distant and faded,
you bore it with grim abstraction. You always had the air
of a lady who'd come down in the world.
Now the world turns without you. January ground
is hard, but the packed bulbs, inaudibly humming,
are waiting to inherit another day's earth
.



False Start

I try to distract myself
from the twisting in my gut
with late night radio
Eventually I turn it off
Insomnia rolls in
a tide of dark thoughts
Nothing helps
especially not
the intermittent efforts
of the copulating couple
in the room below
and with his every thrust
and her every moan
something twists and twists
And when they've finished
the noise of night
the noise of nothing
keeps me awake
I lie there hot and cold
wide-eyed and scared
not knowing why
till the bird's
false start twitter
The wind gets up
The wind plucks at the trees
and something twists and twists



Late Night Row

the late night row outside my dorm
went on and on

one wanted an apology
about something from the other

they both just kept repeating themselves
neither one would call it a night


Book Stacks

The library's almost empty.
I drift between book stacks.

What shall I read? Shall I read?
Or shall I just hide?

Or shall I just drift like a grey-green ghost
that haunts the library
?




After Graduation

After graduation
is a prospect I prefer not to contemplate

After graduation
there will be nothing between myself and the world

After graduation
is a nightmare called reality

After graduation
does not exist