The Power of Performance (Patti Smith) and 2 other new poems by Henry Bladon

The Power of Performance (Patti Smith)

Your pale lips are dry
yet your hoarse voice
is pulsing a staccato yell
as the lights and the drumbeat
form a pounding rhythm
for sweating energy
and the wide eyes that
restrain dark pupils
reduced to pinpricks
because you like it like that;
as switchblade lyrics weave
through strands of loose hair
and find expression in the
air of serious reflection,
then settle gently on the floor
in a state of satisfied exhaustion.


the preacher is proud of
his lemon-scented candle
smoking beside the pulpit

as usual, he clears his throat
and clicks his tongue
nine times in three couplets

but nothing really matters
when the church
has no congregation


You come and you go –
sometimes you complain
with your quicksilver tears
spilling onto the floor

or maybe you will shout
and say I’m egocentric
and that I have no
space to ‘incorporate’

but I have no time for displays
of bathetic emotionality,
your desire to correct me
or your view on misogyny

all I know is that
every time I recline
it is on a simple background
of silence as my only constant

Henry Bladon.  is based in Somerset in the UK. He is a writer of short fiction and poetry and teaches creative writing for therapeutic purposes. He has degrees in psychology and mental health policy, and a PhD in literature and creative writing. His work can be seen in O:JA&L, Forth Magazine, Tuck Magazine, Mercurial Stories, The Ekphrastic Review, and Spillwords Press, among other places.

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