Breath-Manifester & Drones



Each bared morning is a swell time to die,

Leaving the town’s ornate maze for the level

Expanse of those lit and meat-eating fields, the

Clouds that turn like ghost machines, the antic

Tremendous woods where Pan’s breath on your heart

Recharms a flame from its grey-furred ember.

I’ll wear my belt blazoned with Alpha Centauri,

For luck, whilst you’ll surely sport that Oxfam scarf

In whose puce stitch some crone has worked G.I.


E. (Glory To The Most High). Time to die, to be

Disturbed by the one re-re-repeated Word

Fanfared by each time-warping bird, each fierce leaf

Or pimped bud that is but love’s newest halloo

Over the heads of the dead and alive, alive-O.

Laughing, you’ll lurch and say or missay, “only kenning what’s real

Saves us from terror. Wilhelm Reich”. Wise words.





You see the Greys, he said, girding his teeth

for a lime doughnut, they use the owl’s

nervous system the way we use a drone

or hidden camera. Given what I now knew,

it almost seemed possible. When green tea

was announced I slid outside for a smoke,


paced roided grass, watched where stained smokestacks smoked

into the wind’s dead breath, its yellow teeth.

Back in the conference centre, the tea-

fresh crowd were pondering the giant owl

that stilled her car on that night when she knew

she knew nothing, its voice a savage drone


terrible to recall, a rising drone

which turned her body into pixel-smoke

swarming upwards and assembled anew

(“like I’d been sucked into a white hole’s teeth”)

on that craft that swept as quiet as an owl.

When she arrived home, hours late for tea,


her forehead was marked with a tau cross: T.

She paused, and the air conditioning’s drone

momentarily quickened the cased owl

on the wall, living eyes long gone to smoke,

and shivered through the symmetrical teeth

of God’s lost children (tell us something new!)


who’d come here to share what little they knew.

I thought of the onset of DMT –

that sense of deliverance into the teeth

of a buzzing wind or luminous drone,

mere seconds after releasing the smoke –

and then of that line from Twin Peaks, “the owls


are not what they seem”. I dozed, dreamt of owls

sane and inviolate in all they knew,

and awoke to the guest lecturer: Smoke

And Mirrors, Carl Jung And The Abductee.

With his grey skin, dark clothes and soothing drone

he might have been a priest. I licked stale teeth


clean of dough, grabbed a smoke with my teeth

and headed to where I knew mowers droned.

Love is an owl and it’s having you for tea.


’s poems have appeared in PN Review, Poetry Review and The Times Literary Supplement. He is currently working on his debut collection, Breath-Manifester.



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