You Me Never

You know who you are
I treated you like shite;
seventeen years I stole from you
and ruined the rest of your life.

My daughter sits on an opposite seat,
my sons travels on a different bus,
all this by own hand
all this I did to us.

I don’t want you back
I do not love you
this I convince myself daily
in my cold one bedroom.

© Copyright D. Archer October 2011 

I got what I deserved. There are not enough words in the universe to explain how I committed such mental atrocities against those who loved me.
I am truly ashamed of myself as a human being.

The Rules of Exhaustion

Write every poem
as if it were the last
you would ever write;

bleed every emotion
from your life into every
word and line;

then seal it
in a letter to yourself
to give you comfort
just before your time;

if it makes you smile
with your last breath
your work is done
and you may pass
to rest.

© Copyright D. Archer October 2011 

My Silent Witness

You, my peerless outcrop
born of millennia
against all elements you resist;
yet this relentless northerly depression
will, in ten thousand years,
cut even you beyond belief;

Many will trespass in your shadow
their footsteps pooled with
unseasonal grey;
rivulets in war-horse tracks swollen;
overgrown with weathered weeds
that survive despite brushed
near horizontal;

Respectful travellers will ask
you bear them directions and
piercing the low slung clouds you
steer them to villages sparse;
adrift, in the blurred valleys beneath;

In reflective guidance
with the palest moonlight against your glacial,
dark scarred skin you skim
a salient path to where they may rest;

They plan journeys homeward
over half pan horizons
back to guest house, shower and bed;
you remain my silent witness
until the sun breaks through swaddling clouds
and those lost in the heather
are found dead.

© Copyright D. Archer October 2011 


An Empty Tank

The last time I looked
you were not me;
not even a ghost
but a shadow
you see;

It is on the inside
not the skin;
it is dark
when the sun shines;

trust me
the tank of empathy
is empty
for what I
have within.

© Copyright D. Archer October 2011 

Another ugly Tuesday

I read some Ted Hughes
I had a shower
not a bath
shame really; bath rhymes better
with Sylvia Plath;

I read some Keats
then some Ginsberg
had a bowl of soup
but I put out the bins first;

Watched some YouTube
put some gas on my meter
watched the clouds
out of my window then
watched Lolita;

I listened some Coltrane
Miles Davis
Thelonious Monk;
had four cigarettes
two cups of coffee
tried to think of
a metaphor for “Monk”;

Had another cigarette
looked at the paint
watched different clouds
out of my window;
wondered where
the morning went;

Tried to surprise
the fridge light;
sharpened all my pens;
re-arranged them alphabetically
then re-arranged them back
by colour instead;

Checked my email
charged my phone
even the voices in my head
have left me alone.


© Copyright D. Archer October 2011

Spike Milligan. I knew you were ill

I was reading a Spike Milligan
book this morning and
thought I would laugh for
the rest of the live long day;

then I read his poem
“Manic Depression”
and forty three words later
he re-defines in every dictionary written
the real meaning of “Pain”.

© Copyright D. Archer October 2011

Spike Milligan, Actor, Author, Musician, Goon, Genius. My favourite.
This is my humble tribute to a fellow sufferer of depression. He wrote “Manic Depression” whilst in St. Lukes Wing of Woodside Hospital, Pyschiatric Wing1953-4 in December 1960. I urge you to check out his stuff, his books are a rollercoaster of emotions laid out like ( I imagine) his life; page after page, funny poem, laugh out loud limerick, funny anecdote then crashing magnificent lines like “Manic Depression”. I did not know him but I would have given my left leg to spend one hour with him. He played the trumpet, I like the trumpet as well.

Hard Birthday Card

My hand made
your birthday card,
an envelope of outpoured emotions
deep, dark and long;
you placed it silently on the mantelpiece
behind unopened letters,
the other half of my heart
and the CD I filled
with our favourite songs.

© Copyright D. Archer October 2011


Regrets, unlike wine,
don’t get better with age;
my regrets
stain my heart
and bring out
middle-aged rage;
constant disappointment
is my only appointment
in my defunct desk diary
I look at every day.

© Copyright D.Archer October 2011