Wayne Holloway-Smith

What is sad is I have created a new self

Wayne Holloway-Smith

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What is sad is I have created a new self to demonstrate to everybody

my hopeless desire my indelible panic the pictures I can't get rid of at night crows

the meaning made in my body's folding and refolding      he is radiant 

with the unseen things of which to be afraid every afternoon

is a blue note too far right now   he's a thick mess on your street

with perhaps its fish mongers its cut-meat sellers and fruit


he is too much not unlike myself sings Lean On Me (mostly) beneath

your window by which he means please let me lean on you

with my hunkered fear of eating the unhappy coincidence

of my teeth the sunk the guilt of these things staid inside me

I have given him no other instrument


except the arrangement of these things upon each other and the business

of your hair curling his endless chewing on the image it makes

and the knowing that each time you emerge from your doorway

for a moment that part of him between the bones

beneath the skin of his chest goes thunk


Wayne Holloway-Smith


Wayne Holloway-Smith was born in Wiltshire and lives in London. He received his PhD in English and Creative Writing from Brunel University in 2015. His poems have appeared in a variety of magazines and anthologies. His pocketbook, Beloved, in case you’ve been wondering was published by Donut Press in 2011. He co-edited the online journal Poems in Which and teaches at the University of Hertfordshire. His first book-length collection, Alarum (Bloodaxe Books, 2017) was shortlisted for the Roehampton Poetry Prize 2017. The final poem in the collection, 'Short', won the Geoffrey Dearmer Prize 2016.