The bleeding wheelbarrow

Inspired by The Red Wheelbarrow 


Lovely rose
Your thorns, oh lovely rose,

Prick and pluck
the petals

till the chicken bleeds

with her fingerprints
the wheelbarrow strolls

and grins a butcher’s gleam.



All that you see

You stand in a sea of people who do not know anything beyond the prices of their own bodies,
They’ve sold their souls to commercials telling them it’s worth more to sell than to give.
Life is meaningless so they hold onto what little they can:
The material things that’ll rust away with age but they don’t seem to care because anything you buy can be replaced, right?

Do as the Romans do, they say but I can’t seem see as they see the world
Because I see the wrinkled eyes of a man sweeping away the fallen leaves of winter,
I see the tired smile of a woman climbing up a flight of stairs after long days of the same work on replay,
I see repetitions of the same lives continuing on while the previous ends like a track that’s stuck on a song no one likes but everyone must listen to,
I see a pain in success and in the touch of paper bills

But then I realise that maybe I’m overthinking all this
And everyone’s the happy one
And I’m the only one in pain.

Mosaic of musings

I’m good at putting you aside. I’m not good at forgetting you.

I’m staring out the window, but really I’m staring into my thoughts.

I’d like to pick a lock and go where I shouldn’t go. Because sometimes going where you shouldn’t go leads you to where you’ve always wanted to go.

When you jump, you’ll fall. But I’d rather be falling than be standing still till the end of time.

I’m silent, but my heart is loud.

You’re like the night: littered with stars, drowning in ghosts.


It feels like nothing, but it’s everything

In time, you may come to realise
that there’s a certain languidness to every step I take,
to every breath I swallow, to every glance I cast.
I see nothing of the future, nor am I in a hurry to reach one.
I see everything of the past, because reliving is just as beautiful
and wonderful as living.
I see something of the present – but I’m not sure what it is yet.

I wonder, if you knew all this, knew of the way I take my time with things
like a car that’s pulling to a stop,
would you portray me in the way they do?
Would you spell me in a sentence,
write down the hypothesis to my destination –
which is none at all, they say,
because apparently, ambition does not fuel me and I’m illogical in the way I think,
an anomaly in graphs wandering straight.

Or will you be the first to read between the lines?
Will you see that I dream but do not plan, that I’m driven by a different goal?
Will you see that I search for something else,
something that proves the truth of miracles, the taste of purpose, the life of meaning?
Will you know that my destination is a person?

That I’m lost in an internal maze
and I’m looking for a pair of arms to hold me up
and take me to the sky
into the mess of coherence,
of knowing without knowing, of smiling just because.

I’m languid in the way I savour
the complexity of everything
but one day, one day I want to understand
the simplicity of the complex.

I’m an anomaly but so is she and so is he and so are they
and so is the mind that’s forgotten who it is.
If you drew a straight line from the centre, no one would touch upon it,
those who try to are sliced apart because they lost themselves
in the trend of wearing an outfit of convention.

So I say again, that in time, you may realise I’m not quite right
in the head
but I’m not quite wrong either:
I’m not interested in this constructed reality
which is harsh and cold and muddled with cynicism.
I want to construct my own version of something real:
beyond the lies we tell ourselves in the confines of conversation
I imagine something as real as simply this.

Then and Now.

(I am just a shadow of who I used to be.)

I try to remember a time when the world was still innocent. When I was still innocent. The earth tremored in delight, not in fear… did it not? And blue… blue was the colour of fine skies, not of sadness. The flicker of every heartbeat signalled to life, not to this creaking pain. I was once unhinged, free to roam and dream and smile at the thought of having those dreams because fantasies defined my realities. But now, fantasies have become just that – fantasies and nothing more; a testament to what could have been but will never be. I am just a rusted piece of metal, too frail to swing open, drowning in my own papery breathes. The doors that once beckoned at me with the vitality of a billion lights have now closed upon me. I am alone. And it is dark. And it is cold.

Innocence is not ignorance. If life’s greatest purpose is to be happy and I was happiest in my innocence, then surely I was at my wisest point in those childhood years? The older I grew it seems, the more unsatisfied I became – it was as though age impaled upon me the inability to see the good through the bad; so much did I acknowledge the bad that I forgot to consider anything beyond that.

But maybe… maybe I think… there’s no point comparing who you were to who you are? Maybe to lose your innocence is to gain a deeper understanding of suffering? And maybe understanding suffering equates to understanding happiness… because how could one ever know how it feels to be happy if one did not know pain and sadness first?

I think maybe I shouldn’t try to remember, because to remember is to accentuate the differences between the past and present – differences that cast a dark cloud of longing and unfufilled dreams over your head ’til you’re reaching for a version of your childhood that never even existed. The doors are closed now, but maybe I still have a little energy left in me to open them up again. Maybe this is a choice. Nothing’s easy and simple anymore, but that doesn’t mean nothing’s achievable. And I have a choice now: either to stay in the dark or take a step forward towards the light.

(You know what I’ve always liked about shadows? They are indications that even in darkness, light exists close by. And you are the reflection of that light.)

A bit of licorice wisdom

I’m thinking of a smile concealing pain, the pillow hiding hours of tears, this chocolate coating containing a roll of licorice horror (sorry to all people/animals/creatures who actually like licorice). You expect homogeneity but everything is far more complex than that. You see that smile and associate it with happiness, forgetting that it might also be a silent expression of sadness. You slump against the pillow and associate its soft surface with comfort, forgetting why you had so yearned for that comfort in the first place. You bite into the sweet chocolate layer, forgetting the undesired taste that lies within.

But then I’m thinking of how that smile is not just hiding pain, it is showing that you can stand up from that pain; how those tears are not a sign of weakness, but a sign of strength, a moment of catharsis; how eating that chocolate-covered licorice might not have been very pleasant but it is a symbol of my ability to choose what I try and what I don’t try.

The good may disguise the bad, but we forget that the bad also disguises the good. A tough life does not equate to an unworthy one.

Don’t find it, it’s not there

So you say that the world is meaningless and life is purposeless. That if you stripped everything down to its essence, there would be nothing. What is the point? There is none. People are searching for something that does not even exist.

Some pretty grim assertions you’re making here, but I gesture for you to continue.

You continue. And say how meaning doesn’t exist but we create meaning, that life is purposeless but we create purpose, that we are the ones who make nothing into something, who transform wind-blown trees and cloudless skies into metaphors, who paint the colour in this world.

And you say: don’t find it, it’s not there.

Create it.