Petra Whiteley

The Hours

Hours ... the falling mirror,

It is so cold now, the pale silver

sign I've swallowed and smothered

within.  There is only stillness

of jet-black untongued utterances.

Aloof incantations, slaughterhouse

Requiem. It's close - glitter in the omens!

My hands are outstretched. I'm flesh-

Folded in your faith. Consuming me. You?

I grip your face, feline and distant,

Waiting; unfaced. Effaced in blackness;

Vision penetrated.  Hours ... grow silences,

Birthing images of you. My fear is you.

I am.  Murmurs in the last, broken sentence

You’ve breathed out beasts of better times.

Hours - I long to touch. They turn and itch,

my pulse with locked wings. Nothings. It's

you who burns me through. I rise and rise,

watching you, watching me. Turn away.


Communion Switch

You've brought a friend home, shy smiling.

He keeps saying hello, keeps on switching

the lights on and off; won't eat the red fish

given, his host's eyes - glimmering, he looks

away, searches through old Christmas boxes

for a shelter, malachite fluid-filled. Drained.

Passersby, pass. Blessed donations,

transfusions of the small copper tinklings.

Lung waste. It's fun to pretend to wear shell

thorns, one hand nailed, one eye watching

for spectators. Shouting slogans, take

your pale mannequins - strategically placed

mystical signs. War and peace, communion beat -

drum and blaze, getting drunk, getting stoned.

Revolutionary annotator crushed under, sniffs glue

from emaciated hands, shredding the dead, gravel

lines blasting the ashes,  children in junk factories.

Fainting formaldehyde funk flower assembly. Father

and mother on the coffin-watch. Silent. Angel spells honey,

s-w-e-e-t. Dirty words in the gun. Do nothing, do fuck all.

Smile, pretty. Less dangerous to be so. Rage and loud noise.

Sucking on oil, on your laptop. Yes, it's them. Not us.

Buttons, we pressed. The veils of the dead flap in the wind.

Their hands so ghostly outstretched for mockery of fuzzy

rats. Shaved heads, prayer beads, emptied minds, nirvana.

Ink numbers, laser-read, sold two for nothing at all. A penny.

Bargain. Death sells, smells just like you. Say no hello.

It's goodbye. Lights out. No sense. Switch it. Flood's behind.

Petra Whiteley © 2009

Eyes in the ground

The moon with the broken spine

of its sleepless hare lashes out

fast and hard, its liquefied light

screams at me -

the black blood putrefied silence,

bed spilt, last breath peeled naked.

Gliding blue with no sound

(no symphony, no sadness)



Is it innocent?

Is it free?


pricks, its dry

sticks sink in, flesh stings,


in the cold. It digs a hole

deep within skull, takes

the surrendered bones

of departed warrior line,

tied tight skin on wheels

its fuel - annihilation,

colour red. Its pulse. Ablaze

in open jaws.

Eyes in the ground, watching

multiple lips flickering sparks,

the lies. Do not scatter them

around these silvery flesh things.

Petra Whiteley © 2009