Four new poems by Jonathan Butcher


That guidance arrives like half formed
words barely spoken; reticent in regards
to any consequence. You shoulder this
burden and project it back in the worst
possible way. 

As that morning light burns slowly into our
hangovers (mine twice as heavy of course),
though age and discomfort your eyes kiss
the cold, wet concrete; a seemingly more
pleasant view.

And at the end of that road that forks off
like prism light, we both then exchange
that friendly discharge of rejection, far
easier than expected and without that
debt of burden. 

One Last Go

The cut glass slices through the sole of my foot,
through this dawn that carries its own stench, like an
abandoned, un-manned sewer that drips its condensation
down stained, broken windows.

My back slightly bent from the powder’s onslaught, that
leaves its scars, each one a fond momentum and which are often
often displayed to retell stories; a convenient replacement for
unnecessary words.

Another blind stare of anxiety; to hold onto those scattered
thoughts becomes far too laborious; they fall like dice into
gutters that reek of rotting carcasses, floating like pools
of oil down cracked urinals.

Our last drop is now sunk, as my thoughts then re-hydrate
the creases from the night previous, and again under your
constant guidance, I commit to that hollow promise to
make this my last. 

On Display

Those deft, cylindrical passageways in which
they all shuffle in silence; eyes half closed,

their footsteps emitting just the correct amount of echo.
Even a polite nod is not considered the correct etiquette.

Those images hang, nailed to the wall
like faulty mirrors. Even the slightest 

touch of their surfaces could sink fortunes;
allow champagne to evaporate into rain.

The doors close against this over polished
corridor. Gathering themselves back into that crowd

once again, they exit with gratitude, their heads
and hands as empty as when they entered.

The Same in Winter

In-bedded in that complex ground,
where we all discuss certain levels
and become overnight Chemists
and Brain Surgeons. 

Where the same buildings and backdrops
serve as that repeated surrounding, still
lacking sanitation; they lost their charm
an age ago. 

The walls adorned with frame photos
that hang like grave stones, the wooden
benches that break under the most brittle
of bones.

And we all gather evidence the next day,
that photo that gathered far too much
expense, leaving us all in that same
pointless position. 

Jonathan Butcher is a poet based in Sheffield, England. He has had work appear in various print and online publications including: Popshot, Sick-Lit, The Transnational, The Morning Star, Mad Swirl, Picaroon Poetry, Amaryllis and others. His second chapbook ‘Broken Slates’ was published by Flutter Press.

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