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Waking naked faces

By Henry Richmond

[in] I puzzle how my name sounds
In your mouth
And wet in your lungs
Weightless, [out] measured
Like the clean-cut curve
Of a question mark
Bursting cider bubble vowels
In empty torchlight [in]

It’s like doing up a zipper
From the wrong side:
Je suis à ta merci
[out] I’ll try to stay warm
Rose warm wicker bodies
Striped bright by the blinds sink
Heavy through the morning [in]
Charting curved sensitivities
With understanding finger-ends


And steady breathing. [in]
In my half sleep I’ll find another metaphor
And try to stay warm
[out] And play with figurines
Of the prospective and the past
That do a little dance
Stress stiff [in] ballroom
And loose imagined waltz

All through old photos monotone
Of unploughed [out] patchwork fields
Where children swing hysterical
With future unremembered
My heart translated by a
[in] Scratched acrylic home

And then a fluttered rising
From the bed I [out] horizontal glimpse
To lift a towel
And it’s the start

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