Many hands

The day before the fridge broke down
++++I wished it would
++++shut up

As I listened, trying to breathe,
++++the noise separated
I could hear the electrons
++++shocking about in the wires
the liquefied gas gurgling thinly
++++in the pipes
a ringing like a legion of teeny steel hammers
++++beating and beating on teeny steel tubes

It sounded like a mill of miniature machines
++++worked by miniature sweating slaves
The heat exchanger was crammed
++++with tiny miserable elves
They couldn’t get at the food
++++they worked all day to cool
I heard stomachs roaring,
++++lungs gargling, feet shuffling

Many mouths were whispering
++++Many hands began to twist
++++and pull

First published in Ink Sweat & Tears, 8 July 2021

Shrunken and small

For Coral

I dreamed my friend was suicidal
So useless she said so useless
that I may as well just die
Shrunken and small she was
A little old nothing

When I told her the dream she said
yes shrunken and small that’s how I feel

I hope she soon feels better
Expands back into her everyday

First published in Creatrix 50, September 2020

The priority seat

The umbrella
The keyring

The bus-stop
The priority seat

The “Yes, please”
The three dollars ninety
The teabag
The front page
The crossword

The plastic basket
The chops, potatoes, carrots, peas
The “Fine, thanks”

The bus-stop
The priority seat

The keyring
The umbrella

The light inside the fridge
The power point
The teabag
The armchair

The three rings
The “Not interested, thank you”

The window
The couple pushing the pram

The light inside the fridge
The exhaust fan
The chops, potatoes, carrots, peas
The foam of the detergent

The wine cask
The armchair
The remote control

First published in Creatrix 49, June 2020