They came with good intentions,
brushes and scalpels,
buckets and spades
and though I told them not to,
the family dog jumped for joy.
I don't know what they expected to find;
a solvable crossword puzzle?
Or broken china
fit for exhibition?
I'd rather not care what they could have seen,
but headproud and fearing a mess,
I constructed an awkward, spurious tale,
then threw in a scary monster
so they would leave me in peace for a while.
My Second Reverie
This morning, as I gazed into the well,
the only thoughts that occupied my mind
were falling, drowning, waking up in hell.
I ranted down, was answered back in kind.
Despairing deep, a dizziness arose
that made me slip, fell backwards on the grass
and there, when I expected I should doze,
my second reverie then came to pass.
A subtle cloud I hadn't yet perceived
gave up its petty squabble with the sun
and while the warmth was welcoming indeed,
it was the light by which the day was won.
Those subtle, probing, uninvited beams
illuminating underneath my skin
betrayed to me the vessel and the means,
the germ of something better lodged within.
This evening, as I gazed into the well,
my lucid mind was confident and still.
I let the sudden thirst within me swell,
then wound the bucket back and took my fill.
Wolfpack Contributor: Lawrence MoorePoetry Showcase by Lawrence Moore
Lawrence Moore has been writing poems - some silly, some serious - since childhood. He lives in Portsmouth, England with his husband Matt and nine mostly well behaved cats. He has poetry published at, among others, Sarasvati, Pink Plastic House, Fevers of the Mind and The Madrigal. His first collection, Aerial Sweetshop, was published by Alien Buddha Press in January. @LawrenceMooreUK
Lawrence Moore has been writing poems – some silly, some serious – since childhood. He lives in Portsmouth, England with his husband Matt and nine mostly well behaved cats. He has poetry published at, among others, Dreich, Pink Plastic House, Fevers of the Mind, Quince Magazine and The Madrigal. @LawrenceMooreUK
In near perfect darkness,
she pads through the woods,
trying to be dainty,
cursed by the snapping of twigs.
Reaching the border,
holding back the ferns,
she stares at the houses,
fails to observe the rain.
They'll all be inside,
laughing and joking.
None will remember
the freckled child at the inn.
She notes the obstructions,
calculates the angles,
nods in agreement,
turns and rejoins the night.
Ghost was first published in Dreich 4 Season 2, March 2021.Magpies
Don't shine too bright, my errant child,
for that's the way the magpies come
to latch upon the gleams and glows
of overprecious little ones.
I used to flirt with books and dolls,
I used to have your scabby knees -
well, look beneath my locks of hair
and witness what they did to me,
then run and join the other girls
who gather at the matchworks line.
Make wood the only thing that burns,
be sensible and anodyne.
Magpies was first published in Pink Plastic House (in The Haunted Dollhouse), December 2020.Smokey
I remember you cowering under Matt's t-shirt
two weeks after your rescue -
finally out from under the bed.
What sights those unblinking eyes had seen
we didn't like to guess.
I remember you making yourself small
in all his jealousy,
launched himself from the kitchen side,
but I remember you best in the garden,
unaware of my gaze,
carefully extending a velvet paw to the butterflies
as though somewhere in your DNA,
a voice said 'Kill'
and another behind those unblinking eyes said 'No'.
Smokey first appeared in Dreich’s Fire and Water chapbook, July 2021.Picture on the Packet
Aware I had no leeway for a tree,
I stood up on a jealous afternoon
to soften up the earth and press my seed.
The ending of the poem follows soon.
My sapling stretched its stem towards the sun
and strew confetti blossom all around
with roots that grew prodigiously and clung,
constricting like a snake what life they found.
My home began to quiver, then to crack,
delivered up a message on the wind.
'These walls would not contain or hold you back.
What is it you can never find within?'
Don't ask me to explain, I understand.
The picture on the packet looked so grand.
We wrestle with foundations reckless fate
has foisted on our sacred temple sites.
Surveyors show reluctance to proceed.
We pay no heed, obliterate the nights
with paint and canvas, microphone and tape,
with pen and paper, clapperboard and screen,
lay 'would have loved' and 'never did' for bricks,
mix 'still to be' for mortar in between
and if our walls should crumble to the ground,
we shan't forget we shared a pretty dream.
Pretty Dream first appeared in The Madrigal volume ii: roots, May 2021.Wolfpack Honorary Contributor: Lawrence MoorePoetry Showcase by Lawrence MooreNew poems by Lawrence Moore: The Ballast, Ferris Wheel, I Must Be LightA Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with Lawrence MoorePoetry mix by Lawrence Moore : ‘My Dream Playground’ from Anthology & new poem ‘Plumb the Depths’3 poems by Lawrence Moore : “Over the Trees” “They Sang For Me” “Tethered”3 poems by Lawrence Moore : “Battle-Hardened” “Ghost #2”, “I am a Tightrope Walker”
It grows stormy up here
in a flimsy basket,
monomaniacally soaring for stars
that I deemed so reachable from below.
You are the ballast,
my supper call,
the path back to reality,
my treat in store when I touch down.
If it were left to me,
would I remember to watch the fuel
or would someone find a mystery wreck
smashed against the mountains?
I've grown tempestuous these last few days.
My Ferris wheel begins to spin once more,
submersion inescapable it seems.
I've upped and downed so many times before,
yet never quite adjusted to the lows
(thank God they come less natural than the highs),
just gritted teeth, awaited upward curves,
my optimism thus far undenied.
Still, secretly, the pauses come like friends.
No rise and fall, suspension of the ride.
I Must Be Light
It's an awkward, freighted world out there
and it often weighs me down,
when the littlest thing we say or do
is prone to produce a frown.
A million causes shout to me;
'Are you ready?' they say.
Don't force me to have substance, friends,
when tomorrow I must be light
for then I can float to a calmer sea
or escape to a warmer clime,
mayhaps mislay the noise in my head
and be dead to the taunts of time,
drift far from reach
for a day
or a week
or as long as it seems to take
till I feel my strength return to me
and I'm ready to gain some weight.
Wolfpack Honorary Contributor: Lawrence MoorePoetry Showcase by Lawrence MooreA Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with Lawrence Moore
Lawrence Moore has been writing poems - some silly, some serious - since childhood. He lives in Portsmouth, England with his husband Matt and nine mostly well behaved cats. He has poetry published at, among others, Dreich, Pink Plastic House, Fevers of the Mind, Quince Magazine and The Madrigal. @LawrenceMooreUK
Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?
Lawrence: I played around with words and wrote the odd poem as a kid, but it didn’t take off in any way until I was a hyper-political college youth with vague dreams of being a singer-songwriter. I would leave little scrawled scraps of lyrics around the house (a nightmare for my minimalist husband to be!). I felt an affinity for John Donne’s poetry early on, but didn’t become a bookworm until my early thirties, so took my influences from artists I loved such as Indigo Girls, Levellers and Kirsty MacColl.
Q2: Who are your biggest influences today?
Lawrence: I’m into some well known poets, like Wendy Cope and Seigfried Sasoon, but I’ve delved deeper down the rabbit hole of Twitter, where I am continually inspired by Kristin Garth (lolaandjolie), c m taylor (@carma_t), Susan Richardson (@floweringink), Annest Gwilym (@AnnestGwilym) and many others.
Q3: Where did you grow up and how did that influence your writing? Have any travels away from home influence your work?
Lawrence: I’ve lived my whole life in the working class coastal city of Portsmouth, rarely traveling. The people I’ve met and experiences I’ve had left their emotional mark on me (particularly as a kid in school experiencing friendship, bullying and unrequited love) but that’s true of most people in most towns. It has given me a love of football and the sea. Perhaps the roughness at the edges helped to make me an introvert, but I’m very fond of the place.
Q4: What do you consider the most meaningful work you’ve done creatively so far?
Lawrence: I guess ‘Holding Hands’ – a pared down, free verse poem I wrote about the difficulties my husband and I have felt as a same sex couple wanting to show affection in public. I am a big fan of form poetry but sometimes, when I have something to get off my chest, it flows out quickly in free verse.
Q5: Any pivotal moment when you knew you wanted to be a writer?
Since my late teens at least, I’ve always sought some sort of creative outlet, but mostly as a dilettante, flitting from discipline to discipline (with zero discipline). I often looked to make something happen with poetry – on MySpace in 2007, then in 2010/11 and 2015, but then I tried quite hard to be a singer-songwriter for a couple of years. I found the whole concept pretty intimidating because it has so many aspects – for example, production, melody, lyrics, vocals and instrumentalism. I partook in a grade 4 piano exam with grim determination but was a mess because of nerves. In 2018, I spoke at my dad’s funeral, where I read the poem ‘High Flight’ by John Gillespie Magee Junior to some thirty people, and despite the strains that come with such an undertaking, it dawned on me later that I’d handled it a lot more calmly than I had the piano exam. I saw nothing in poetry that could unnerve me and felt ready to wave my dilettante days goodbye.
Q6: Favorite activities to relax?
Lawrence: Reading, listening to music, going for walks and playing Elder Scrolls games.
Q7: Any recent or forthcoming projects you’d like to promote?
Lawrence: I’ve made several poem videos, for accepted pieces, that I’ll be putting up on Twitter upon publication. I’m also working (I hope) towards a first collection, so that is occupying my mind a fair bit.
Q8: What is a favorite line/stanza from a poem/writing of yours or others?
My place within this scheme is very small – I am no Gandalf, I am Radagast.
From my ‘Radagast’, to be published in Sarasvati (Indigo Dreams Publishing)
Q9: Who has helped you most with writing?
Lawrence: My mum helps me quite a bit. She wrote poetry herself and is a very qualified teacher. She got me using more line breaks for effect and has read and commented on everything I’ve had accepted, which concerns me a little as I may get something really lewd or terrifying published one day and then feel obliged to show it to her!
Bio: Lawrence Moore has been writing poems – some silly, some serious – since childhood. He lives in Portsmouth, England with his husband Matt and nine mostly well behaved cats. He has poetry published at, among others, Dreich, Pink Plastic House, Fevers of the Mind, Quince Magazine and Green Ink Poetry. @LawrenceMooreUK