Friday, 12 December 2008

2008 AD- a christmas poem

2008 AD

this month strips the twigs to black bifurcating spears
each bears a gravitational drop of water at its tip
Christmas looms and shoppers plunder cut price
sales, the shops closing down now the bankers have won
and MP3s and x-boxes teeter on the topmost shelves
as if the moon were not important any more
the lack of moon, under those dark wet clouds
the mindless metallic lodestone of the stars
their glorious loveless spaciousness of space
that dim enchanted internet we ape.

Friday, 7 November 2008

The fact that you seem very important, but you are not.

Dessicated ghost , can you remember
how pliant the days where when you stole across my vision
your stain on retina, I was undone, and still I talk to you
even though you are no longer a viable proposition.
Do you remember me? Or do the winds
blow across the marsh to meet only a wisp of seagrass
drying remotely on the shore?
I want to ask you about unkindness:
specifically the need for it, and whether
love cancels it out ?
I might bring a priest flapping across the dunes
or a bureaucrat's sealed files upon my head
dropped from a supersonic aircraft.

An armillary sphere blocks my vision
and the tick-tock clack of mechanised
institutionalised misuse.
Love, can you change the elected government?
The betrayal and the use of power against the woman
clad in rags with the child against her slackening breast?
Love! It couldn't even bring me to you.

Tuesday, 4 November 2008

The Shadows of Birds

The shadows of birds

Between red buildings, bright blue flies its kite
the eyeful seeded with flurries of uncertain birds;
Only this is relevant, choppy as a newsreel
unfolding a story which never sticks around or yet quite fades
Extending beyond the brain into some coalescing pool
of nothing mattering/ mattering very much.
As if two children playing on different continents
glance upward at the same faint shimmering movement,
As though this October day, this sun, this broken thought
is all that marks us out us human, this recognition
of the absence of light where light briefly fails to pass.
We mark the choreography and its notation
the trajectory of miraculous and ordinary birds,
Some dim lobe marked out for remembering then forgetting
how some things end, are endless, how long they last.

Monday, 29 September 2008

Super 8 Poem -Veronica

Super 8

I gain no admittance here
even though I remember the colour
of each blanket in the bedrooms
the parlour filled with uncertain light
blinking turns the sun off and on.

I want to run down the stairs
to the kitchen and out into the garden
feeling the naked step over carpet, lino
wood and grass, to be received;
a welcome visitor to the summerhouse.
The creamy purring corner
of tea and animals and fading traycloths
I want to talk to those tired and snoozing
holograms who know the family tongue,
the meaningful interstices, the vowels
a metaphor for love,.Dare I mention, love
again, and once more love-
I want to run the old film one more time-
Its final title bleaching on the minds eye

Oh we are a broken clan.

Tuesday, 23 September 2008

FM poem

Today I have no comment, fine fingers
shoot up my legs and arms and my
synapses are on amber alert:
I am a map of nerves and my borders
are constantly being patrolled
the perimeter fences electrified and discordant-
through these echo messages
the government of fibromyalgia
telling me that I need to write it down
that a reckoning and a totting-up
on the gross national debt of coping
will mean heavy borrowing and cracking down
of the crossfire from all 11 checkpoints.

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Cat poem and images by Veronica Aldous

Uhauma-um, err
Ura, ha, mm
Eh? e hana
Uh, uhauma-err!


He sleeps, his cat all tongues
Licking the intense vegetation
A flea? Then cough!
a pause
Oh should she run away?

Sunday, 14 September 2008

Imaginary Boyfriend

Imaginary Boyfriend

In a parallel universe he closes his eyes and dreams
are a giant purifying force, how cut off we are
how cut off. Unravelling slightly I can imagine
his sleeping, his breathing as if it is different
from any other respiration. It's not, of course
of course, it's not. We make our gods from nix
then wonder why they're not much more ardent
a hand on the nape during self-made love.

Veronica Aldous 2008

Thursday, 10 July 2008

The Moth with Devastating Wings- Veronica Aldous

Be warned those who plagiarise or breakcopyright- yes, you know who you are!

The Moth with Devastating Wings returns
to find she has been Plagiarised.

In case you have not noticed I cannot be destroyed.
Your finalities, and prognostications
upend, and those pale winds will finally take you
to the place of learning where you will be whitened
like a bone in silk.

Your ineptitude has created an annoyance in me
If I stamp then my small footfall decrees the end.
All your attempts to paraphrase my magic
and filch my voice, will end in silence and vacuum
as a year of dustiness and marvellous markings
is phased in by the Ministry of the Moon.

You cannot hold a flame to me, you know.
I am not just a moth. I am also a Stuka -
although my body is soft
my decals are encrypted coda
I dance a gavotte at your demise
for gaiety!
for the black joke of my inimical design!

Sunday, 29 June 2008

Bridal Suite

Madame Perreire rings the bell, the house incomplete
the house falling down. I'd like to know what this room's about -
the cine showing nude after two-tone nude
desperately wanting something more, than this stiff
collateral, the thing that Madame banks on, that percentage
lying thickly on the floor, near the door, archly winking.
I got bruises, and one thing is, I don't like this any more -
White and spiritous, like white rain, white noise
white horses, white whores, oh I like you better;
ripped white paper, my nails are bloody, sore
from writing, writing till you come knocking
ghosting in my Elsinore.

Monday, 12 May 2008

Bad handbag/ Cate Blanchett

Cate's Lipstick

Cate Blanchett is incandescing, having a red lipstick moment
She dissembles, is caught out, winces.
Her phone rings twice, and the camera pans to the low table
Some deep hues emerge there which foretell her downfall.
What should she do? There is light on a wall in strange patterns,
I don't like the look of her blouse, too racy, too blue.
Her teeth probably ache. I know she's acting, but does she feel
Culpable for this sad moon, this set of frames
This way we all respond? So we breathe in the lit-up air,
Remember some relative time, some infidelity
Or judgement to be made. The window is white:
In the shed there lingers some forgotten doll
Sitting waist high in a tin tub, tiny tears with drilled in holes
Peeing and crying. I am looking from far away,
At Cate from outer space, I am the lunar shift
Peering at dreams. The sprockets tear
The film flips and flaps, the audience groans
As though Cate has dropped through time -
Damn! I like her lipstick - that kiss-off colour!

Friday, 9 May 2008

The silent waitress who brings your coffee

The silent waitress who brings your coffee
thinks nothing of your complications
tests and confusions, she only serves
you briefly, cares for you
among the milliseconds of her day
her hands are capable, but sorrowful
her mouth pragmatic but full of truths
should she ever speak to you
the screens would fall
and the fine sharp glass of memory
impale you to the cafe floor.

Poem by veronica aldous- 10 seconds of an animal

10 seconds of an animal.

10 seconds of an animal
is fast
is shivering, is black cream
upon the the embers
of a hearth
its surface rapt, controlled
the pump beneath
well tracked with coursing blood
its mind remote-
an amazonian

a witch's tail
a witch's heart
off centre-
ah, violent, ah
its surface suave
skinful of force
they chain it to a circus car
it grinds its teeth
the ringing screech
a wiry thrill on metal bars,
lie down, lie down-
god help me
I see its face
in yours.

I want its low slung danger
the way it knows no anger
is concentrated
arching, fluid
takes its prey
as lover

Veronica Aldous
Published Orbis 2006

Sunday, 4 May 2008


I have collected these winged beasts
nine insects jostle in a teacup, their dusts
pollute the surfaces, they are enchained
and disoriented by their entrapment
their small soft bodies dry as spores
are difficult to identify, i like them well
their silver netting, their gaudiness
the way they shivered on the air
just before they aimed and fell
the captivity is a kind of reckoning
their inward fire, the cold precision
with which you placed them
i might crossbreed them
i could do with more-

I toy with one
upon my finger, the tip I drew right down
your face, the one you told me off about
so cauterized- I burned for hours
until I realised you were not serious
you never are.
They crawl on me, their flags bear symbols
warnings, prognostications, their decals
diagrams of lovers in flagrante
that I note down carefully- choose to ignore.

Each purple emperor, camberwell beauty
swallowtail and poplar kitten
all amount to a small collection
their brief pulsation lasts half a second,
when I caught them in the darkness
as your mouth came near to me
should I pin them to black velvet?

do you think I should set them free?

For the inside of a Greetings Card by Veronica Aldous

For the inside of a Greetings Card

Bought for the Occasion of "Losing your Friendship"

Last seen in a crowded bar, you seemed one way
and then another. How odd, I thought
as though you were a mirror.
My old friend,
now somehow blind, affectionately I send
you thought-flowers and hope you will receive
this emblem of a comradeship
still sweet,so out of fashion.

Monday, 21 April 2008

Dead Swiss- poem by Veronica Aldous

The Dead Swiss

The clock produces different places.
one minute I am a child asleep,
the next,looking at a skyscraper!
cities rise, then are drowned
bells sound, teatime, downtime
far off in Ys, kids are still playing
at the bottom of a lake.
we think we are alive, next moment
we are someone else - such change
causes no consternation; the dead Swiss
merely wink at one another
adjusting their chronographs
to allow for such Atlantean jetlag.

Copyright Veronica Aldous 2008

Sunday, 20 April 2008

Flawless Hoods- watercolour by Veronica Aldous

Lost Lands

These jewels, maps, fall from your hands:
the continents spread out, until the colours bleed -
your plunder, spoils, from violet lands,
and in the light, is light on light
red broken on a wheel of gold
the gold itself exchanged or sold.

And in each souvenir, I see your face
painted on a different sea. I touch the treasure -
you watch me touch, I see your pleasure
expand, contract, pulled back by tides
as though your guide does not include
the conquistador's old game.

The game of humming birds and nervous flowers
an elegant dance that circles, hovers -
your shadowed gaze, intent, explores
the boundaries; my hair, my skin, my clothes -
as though I'm terra incognita up ahead
or one who walks on starry shores.

Then something falls:
you start to talk of dust and loss and emptiness,
produce some well worn stones with flaws,
I probe the inclusions far too well
the squandered light of light on light
the light all spent -
I want to stop the slipping night
but cannot stop my mouth

or yours.

Copyright Veronica Aldous - image and poem not to be reproduced without author's permission.

Saturday, 19 April 2008

Mind The Gap- poem by Veronica Aldous

In the underwater world of dreams I am unchanged
I mouth a mirror image of myself, no future principle
intercepts, no aide memoire is applied
I am completely perfect here- and safe.
Before,before things broke away and snapped,
And what was solid slid aside.....

I wake- a gaping hole persists
I'm Anna Karenina today -
Please Mind the Gap.

Thursday, 17 April 2008

White Rabbit Veronica Aldous

Blanc Lapin

It was not too long before you made me write again
though why you make me do this, I have no idea
ennui perhaps, a disinterest in other things
perhaps a childhood steeped in too many goddamn fairies,
Looking glasses, C.S Lewis.

I used to dream and across the long hot afternoons
of chalk dust and verbiage the windows hollowed
into a turquoise sea, behind a parthenon
of shades wherein the gallant and undefeated
provoked and tested my reactions to maintaining
my virginity.

Some such pale necromancer or snake oil guy
As you, might soon appear in person, wrecking
EnglishLit, my stylistic attempt in deconstructing
Hamlet, slide round the school's high fences, wait for me
get me knocked up.seduced like Mary, pregnant.


I'm grown up now and don't have Blakey's on my shoes
to make that tic-tac sound down corridors,
a time-bomb in school uniform; now's the internet's
exquisite searches on your life
expose your pixel-form too late

White Rabbit to my Alice.

Veronica Aldous copyright 2008
poem white rabbit poetry+kit

Sunday, 13 April 2008

On Light - Veronica Aldous

On Light

Like Constantinople, I made many words from you
shimmering palely in the horizon
a hologram of indefinite proximity.
I called you into being
My edgeless paper, limitless ink
spattering, infertile as the desert
while you filed and compiled in your office
desultory as a demi-god.
"I'm dreaming" you always said, and I was too,
although mine was quite a different one.

"When we came finally upon the dome
it was whiter than bone, than polished ivory -
All the houris were locked away, catalogued
as if they were a library, a vast force of knowledge,
which indeed they were, if you believe that
emptiness has form, and can be reckoned and valued.

I put myself into the rain that I could touch you
Into the city dirt under your feet -
"No-one reads poetry any more" you told me
As you lay behind a filigree screen -
I was taking notes, trying not to catch your golden gaze
For fear of sudden blindness.

Veronica Aldous 2008

Thursday, 10 April 2008

My hands enfeebled as two new hatched butterflies

My hands enfeebled as two new hatched butterflies

flap uselessly, signalling a drought of you, then rise,
to vein the air as shadows, moving up and down
on heat haze, night shifts, eddies, warps and wefts,
uncoil upon transparent sheets, to flock, return
report upon the heat beneath your shirt.

Their warmth expands, their memory respires and grows
as mycelia, flowers, burst from arduous slow pulsations -
my hands are thinking of you - defining, drawing a simulacrum
they repeat the galliard of when they last danced, tense and gloved
upon the fringes of your hair, the taut menisci of your surfaces
sent arcane messages, measured signals, synapses,
to your tracks and pulses, grew dilatory and filled, were satiated
by you beating as a wing will beat,
the feathers brushing back and forth.

On you I damped my thumbs and printed patterns, offerings
reflexed my palms as temple maidens gesturing in heat
I ghosted lingeringly on your pale skin - was matched, replete -
but now these hands, these butterflies, virgins, starfish
are lost and washed up flotsam that find no pleasure,
that lapse forlornly, squirm and flail where once you were -
have lost the hot axis on which to turn
they seem vestigial, limbic, drumming, hardly human
as roofspace starlings -
on inner walls
they knock and burn.

copyright Veronica Aldous

Monday, 7 April 2008

Smoking Girl by Veronica Aldous

Spiral Jetty

I see her white against the whitening window
she is undressed, her body bends a spiral
curve, a jetty loosening in space, her dark hair
bluish dark with the slab of glass behind her
the cold blue flash of winter streets beyond.
Now a picture here, of rocks, a rising hill fort
drops from my hand into my head, the air
was cold and slightly salty, I held my mouth
open for a while and swallowed clouds, high vapour.
A little like the way I thought of you.
Silver wrapped around my finger, carried you
into a shifting shadowed cave, there in my bone pavilion
we reclined on uncertain cushions, supped dangerously
on coiling cloud fungus juices, chinese flowers.
I saw you recently as though you were unraveling -
I no longer think you're real, unhouseled spirit
my memory made you curve like breath on mirrors
uncoiling, till you left my body's shell.


Veronica Aldous

Friday, 4 April 2008

Brighton Ice Cream- oil painting by Veronica Aldous

Painted in oil and many glazes on canvas.

by Veronica Aldous- Brighton Stall girls watercolour

Brighton Stall Girls - North Laines
I painted this in watercolour on a piece of heavy "Not" Saunders Waterford paper 368gsm.

Wednesday, 2 April 2008

Seahenge- poem copyright Veronica Aldous


The quartered moon, the lid upon its eye is looking
at the seahenge, the submerged sunken ring

its spikes appear, a ruined forest shows its teeth
the sea a cowl upon its rank defiled carnality

where blood mixed bitter with the salty breeze
and upturned roots defy the meaning of a tree

the sigh of tide, the shingles bleak with baltic beads
the agates, ambers, churned to frosted uniformity

to bleed, commingle sand and sea , the pagan bride
when hands were words, the meaning lost, the mudra hides

the bond between, the rotting headland out of reach
the ruined breathy beach where lovers lie and lie again

washed by ebb and flow and in the winter, brackish ice
on bending reeds - the spindrift veils the site of sacrifice

as though a kindness entered here, where only death
spoke to make the seasons come and come again

the pacts and promises to stay and stay as one
there is no one now, except the break, monotonous break

the wracks are stranded, the marrams list and keel
and sanderlings pick at dejected flotsam, razor shells

as restless shoppers pick at shelves and finding nothing new
go home - the curlew calls to wandering babies, go home go home

go home, she cries. No answer. The drab disrobing sea
prostrates itself in supplication before the matting clouds

if mermaids cry, then they cry here. Their saline mouths
gasping in the dreary sunlight, wind picking up their sticky hair

to drift upon the shore, wish you were here, wish you were here
when half an afternoon spread out before the totes meer

the sea henge staking memory to shore, an augury uncovered
its upright bones prop up the lost, the sweet, the drowned

as lovers fallen on hard times renew their vows and handfast
despite the prophecy, go home with faces set, forget the past

the keenly tempered bladed arctic blast, and warm themselves
with white romantic dunes and misremembered waves.

Little Owl- copyright Veronica Aldous

Little Owl

He trembles when he is stroked as if
the spring in him is overwound. I am the same way,
the visitors walk through me having paid.
He feigns sleep and if sleep were possible
in a foyer, then all his dreams are a cinema
of mice and moons and emptiness and shallow
bending wheatstraw. Hush, I would whisper,
hush to his unhearing ears, his dumbfounded brain
if he could fly above me, maybe I would sleep again.

Crow's Sense of Humour.

undiminished by his reputation, his blackness all blue
lights and liquescent shimmerings, unburdens
himself of a hollow stalk of dead winter wheat
and pauses to consider the vast overturned bowl of the hill
just at this moment when I am trying to forget something
the crow is trying to remember: a particular gavotte, or trance
dance where the men have their arms pinioned
and the women flounce and curtsey discordantly
he is the lover of stalks, the puffer of big cigars.
I am not forgetting now, but remembering after all
as the crow lands lightly on my outstretched arm
his traces jangling and his hood all a-jitter
his metaphor is as violent as the thunderstorm
he will impart, his humour and his great black beak
tearing away at the meat of the past, baring the rib
of my disaffection, my pride and my sense of loss.