When I’m with you, the world is muted
We talk in quiet rooms, and damp the sounds
Of the world around
But when you touch me (touch me touch me)
My heart thumps like the force of
You, pressing your chin
On my lips
Me, gripping your palms
With my thumbs
Us, grinding our skulls
Til we bruise
I love the feel of
Your bones
Jammed against me
My teeth
Dug in your skin
Our hands
Flapping and clenching
You spinning
Me bouncing

You have the loudest hands I have ever seen
I could listen all day
Our bodies judder and shake
Reverberating through ourselves, the air, and each other
If sound is vibration
Our love is deafening
Drowns the ambient mess
Of the world
Wakes the butterflies in my stomach
My heartstrings resonate
With your silent hum


The first time I chose sugar over salt

run away with me

into the woods where it’s quiet and still

then touch my heart lightly, my skull firmly

bring your mind and your love but leave anything that feels like a weight you can’t carry and let the lightness remind you of the release

of the weight of this clumsy dance we do to please aliens

because our grace is invisible

our songs assonant; our eyes miscalibrated our thoughts misallocated

they call us jigsaws but you’re a fucking diamond who cares about the setting when your shine is that radiant

press your edges into me and i’ll find the give to hold you firmly with the softness they’ll never value but is all you see in me

For Jacqui

We believed we were lizards
Basking on rocks
We lay under different suns
Weathered different storms
Shed our skins

Now our suns are gone
The rock we share is cold
Our skies, cool and grey
We are slow and weak

It is so cold, my love

But we are not cold blooded

And even if we never feel
That heat again
I’ll stay here with you
Sharing what warmth
We make for ourselves

In Common

I met a boy a few years my senior
Who said we were the same
That monogamy was heteronormative
And he was too evolved
To be “selfish”

He told me his girlfriend
Was hesitant at first
His girlfriend
Silent beside him
smiled weakly

“What changed” I asked her
She seemed surprised
Looked to him before answering
Then at her shoes
She delivered her lines:

“I just realised I was being so silly
That I had to take some responsibility
Once my beau explained jealousy
Wasn’t how we were meant to be
And now i’m just ok, really”

She smiled then, i think
Or it might have been a wince
Her boyfriend nodded, contented
Then excused himself
She stayed

She whispered
As if confessing
A terrible secret
“So are you really poly? how many partners?
And when jealousy strikes what’s your answer?”

I remembered times i cried
Was scared, bitter, angry
Wanted to ensure things stayed the same
Wanted things to be different
For them to stay or go or choose me or leave him

Remembered my lover’s beau making me tea
In the warmth of their home
Bonding over our mutual affection
For our girlfriend, sure
But more importantly for feminist theory and buffy

I thought of screaming rows
Over my ex-girlfriend’s boyfriend
Who only accepted her nonmonogamy
Because our gay love was just
“A bit of fun, really, you girls look so hot when you make out do you mind if i watch”

I remembered holiday photos
I was not in
But poured over lovingly
And ones i stared at for hours
Consumed by crushing, gnawing envy

I told her
“I don’t know if ‘poly’ sums it up exactly
Right now I have three partners, no-one’s my ‘primary’.
I live alone. that’s what I’ve found works for me
I prize freedom most, but it does get lonely.

“My answer doesn’t have to be yours
But when jealousy digs in its claws
What helps a little is liking my metamours
And my partners and friends can reassure
By saying ‘what you’re feeling is real, not against poly law’

“It’s no one’s fault if I don’t like my circumstances
few things are as complex as I find romance is
Sometimes through sympathy the pain diminishes
But ultimately I’m more important than any relationship is
And if I can’t bear the pain, even if I love them, our courtship finishes”

I couldn’t tell how she felt
About my answer
We exchanged pleasantries awhile, then I left
I was going to say goodbye to the boy as well
But he was busy hitting on another woman ten years his junior


Sometimes, when i meet someone new
their existence opens up in front of me like a forest
like a galaxy
And i want to /know/ them and for them to know me
but not in the sense of studying the forest’s map or looking through a telescope at a distant scattering of glitter that betrays nothing of the searing chemical fury borne of an octillion tonnes of hydrogen pouring heat and light into an abyss so vast it defies comprehension
I want to experience their life as a thing i can traverse and learn and touch and feel
i want to be understood and to understand
i want to hold open my heart and my head and my guts and have someone say “i /know/ you. now know me”
This is how I love. How I feel. How I trust.

Sometimes I fear that I am kerosene. I am an accelerant. I am rocket fuel. I am ~intense~. I am /too much/. I am unrelenting and exhausting. I am lists and information you didn’t ask for and laboured topics and no but wait just one more thing otherwise you won’t get it.
I am show me how your mind works.
I am tell me about every friend you’ve ever had.
I am show me the places your skin remembers.
I am please help me understand you the only way I know how.
I am my family hates me.
I am an abandoned watercress farm in the woods.
I am Soho square surrounded by pigeons.
I am the cathedral cloisters.
I am colour coded rooms with beds I never want to sleep in.
I am a code but I am already broken so just hold my pieces and maybe we can find some edges to guide us into getting it together. You are a masterpiece. You are a universe of meaning and I cannot wait til liftoff. You are the deepest darkest forest whose canopy I cannot wait to get lost under.