A Heaving Petticoats Poem

It’s true, I said, I’m musically promiscuous
but I thought you were too?  

Surely we belong together?
What a gorgeous catastrophe,

you replied, how we flamenco like this 
but never meet, not really.

Then let’s rewrite the script, I urged
let’s go one cerulean afternoon

to the cottonwoods 
where the bees wallow

and make like a samba in the zinnias.  
No one need ever know!  Besides

I wore my peignoir for you
and the moment is already cyanic.

You give me some kind of all-overishness
damn you! you declared, but got up

gruntled, took my hand
and led me there.

© N Nazir 2023

Written for Shay’s Word Garden where Shay brings us inspiration with award-winning poet Alicia Suskin Ostriker, with the word list taken from her poetry collection The Crack in Everything (words used: gorgeous, catastrophe, flamenco, cerulean, cottonwoods, bees, samba, zinnias).

Written also for Sammi Scribbles Writing Prompt: Script, 100 words.

*This is really a belated Throwback Thursday 🙂 But has also been my earworm this week.

When Your Chakras Become Planets

I had a fit of the clevers the other day
ripped the arms off 
an oversized overcoat
turned it into a hibernacle
then crawled in to sleep away 
this ghostly winter that descended 
like an out-of-place glitter ball
(beautiful but wholly unhelpful)

I imagined us all around the fire 
like so many summers ago 
toasting our bones night after night
in the liminal autumn slimness
fending off the blade of chill
each of us telling a tale in turn
how we navigated this mortal maze
some gallant time or other

and I had to crush that sweet bitch
nostalgia, who tried to court me
in the wolf moon hours.  
What’s with you? I said.
Can’t you see I’m immune?
She slunk away to haunt someone else
and left me hunting dreams
in stealth fox mode
as I slipped between the worlds
beyond skin 
beyond heart’s language.

© N Nazir 2023

Written for Shay’s Word Garden where Shay brings us inspiration with lyricist Keith Reid (words used: overcoat, ghostly, descended, blade, tale, mortal, maze). The Word list is still up until next Wed 11th Jan if you want to take part.

Free Verse Revolution #Publication!

My greatest thanks to Editor Kristiana Reed for publishing my work in the latest issue of Free Verse Revolution literary magazine ❤ I have two erasure poems and one painting included here in Issue VIII, Guinevere: rebirth on pages 21, 41 and 66, titled Nomad, Revelation and Scrying at Dawn, alongside some great company. Simply the best way to finish the year!

You can download your free copy here or purchase a print copy here.

❤ Thank you so much to all of you for your continual ongoing support with my writing, in always taking the time to read my work and post a comment. It’s so heartwarming and uplifting. Know that I truly, deeply appreciate you ❤

When the Night Gives Up Her Secrets

I’d never been to a séance before, and it didn’t seem appropriate this close to Christmas.

Though spacious and tastefully furnished, the room had reminded me of a vault, all sombre dark wood surround and shadowy eaves.  

The thing is, I didn’t know whether to tell Janey about the tall pale man who had been standing behind her the whole time.  They’d only done it for a bit of fun after all, she and her cronies, to figure out why things kept mysteriously vanishing, keys ending up in the fridge and such-like.  But there he had been looking down at her, she, giggling and oblivious, as it seemed had been everyone else.

And when, shuddering, I left, gulping in the night air, I could hear the strains of a lone violin playing somewhere in the house.

© N Nazir 2022

Written for Shay’s Word Garden, where we are given inspiration with Lawrence Ferlinghetti. Words used: Christmas, violin. Shay also shares her favourite poem by him called Junkman’s Obligato, which is an absolute joy to read, I highly recommend it. You can find it over at her page.

Written also for GirlieOnTheEdge Six Sentence Story Linkup, where the prompt word is Vault. (Unfortunately, I was too late to link my post but I thought I’d share it anyway).

Written also for The Sunday Muse, image as shown.

Streamers & Fairy Lights

It creeps up from the back of your head to the forefront of your mind, the idea.  You try and pin it down on paper but it scarpers.  You try again, it evades.  Again, and it vamooses.  

You manage a semblance of thing plucked from a stray cloud of silver lining but it is far removed from what you glimpsed.  An abstract configuring, an ink-bleed, paint-scraped, notion of the thing.  A sister thing, a cousin thing of the original platonic idea.  Tis a two-dimensional face of the dodecahedron.  Just one angle of the tetrahedron.  It’s Pythagoras hiding behind a curtain, for he was rumoured to be so good-looking, he didn’t want to distract anyone, wanted to be appreciated for his brains only.  And he was.  Go, Pythagoras.

Sometimes devils wear an angel’s face.  Cause they’re tricksters, see.  They would turn it all round on you in a jiffy.  Don’t be fooled by cherubs, they’re full of it.  Stick them on the tree and forget about them.  Fairy lights make it all look pretty anyway.

But you’re right, of course, the reverse is also true.  Some fiends are angels hidden.  To smoke out the legit devils.  Traitorous in a good way.  Just look what happened to Snape.  Some revelations are posthumous.  It’s the riddler’s dark joke.  

And isn’t it true that humdrum is happiness after a Kansas whirlwind of upside-down?  You couldn’t write a typical verse after that ever again.  Then some days, you’d release firecrackers into the open air of the yawning plains just to add some freak normal to your humdrum, cause twisters were your normal for so long.

© N Nazir 2022

Written for Shay’s Word Garden, where we are given inspiration with a word list taken from lyrics of songs by The Smiths. Words used: devil, joke, humdrum, typical, verse.

There are so many Smiths and Morrissey songs I love but I’ve listened to them a bit too much over the years that I can’t any more. But here’s one I enjoyed revisiting today. I’m Not Sorry from Morrissey’s 2005 You are the Quarry album. It’s a great live version, I just love it. May you lend it your ears awhile.