Poetry from Henry Bladon

Your Hands Have Blood on Them

From: The Bird of Paradise (RD Laing – 1967)

Men can destroy the humanity of others,

remember your hands have blood on them

you’ve been told as much

that will corrupt you and destroy you

with unadulterated compassion.

How do you plug a void?

Just don’t ask for trouble

remember your place in the hierarchy

and that last desperate clutch.

Do not despair – the soul dies before the body.

Thanatophobia

When the writer from Rio

lost his treasured notebook

his head started to feel

like a blood-filled bath.

It wasn’t the loss of shopping list

or the plot for his next novel

that most preoccupied the mind,

just the writerly thought about the

paper-based metaphor for death.


Henry is a writer, poet and mental health essayist based in Somerset in the UK. He has a PhD in literature and creative writing from the University of Birmingham. He is the author of several poetry collections and his work can be seen in Pure Slush, Lunate, and Synchronized Chaos, among other places.

Poetry from Henry Bladon

Future Version of Myself     

What if the tragic future version of myself

has never experienced happiness and joy?

What if the beautiful future version of myself

grows old and frail too soon?

What if the bored future version of myself listens to Mercy Me

and decides that things ain’t what they used to be?

And what if the anxious future version of myself is forced to choose

between a better life or a better death?

What if the future version of myself never exists?

Lay-by

polystyrene cup/ fast food wrapper /

broken glass from an accident /

a stray L-plate / a crushed tin can /

along with / forgotten memories /

of past liaisons /


Henry is a writer, poet and mental health essayist based in Somerset in the UK. He has a PhD in literature and creative writing from the University of Birmingham. He is the author of several poetry collections and his work can be seen in Pure Slush, Lunate, and Synchronized Chaos, among other places.

Poetry from Henry Bladon

Narcissist

Don’t tell me to roll with the punches

and don’t lecture me with  

supercharged sepulchral rhetoric

about the curses and blessings of life.

Posturing is the seedling of toxicity

and gesturing is the mother of pomposity,

but you wouldn’t know about that

existing in your world of endless personal imagery.

Your lime juice sense of entitlement

and distorted chilli pepper logic

congeals in your bubble gum brain

like acid pips in a rotten core

Take your arrogance for a long walk

and watch the filament of your empathy

uncoil behind you like a rusted fuse wire

I know what you are and so do you.

The Denial of Darkness

While contemplating

the hypersensitivity of others

I became hypersensitive

to modern etiquette

and subsequently terrified

of transgressing a rule

about which I am

yet to be informed

so,

I closed my eyes

only to discover that

the complete Book of Revelations

was written in pen

on the inside of my eyelids.


Henry is a writer, poet and mental health essayist based in Somerset in the UK. He has a PhD in literature and creative writing from the University of Birmingham. His latest poetry collection is a collaboration about mental health with Dutch artist Marcel Herms and is available from Egalitarian Publishing.

Poetry from Henry Bladon

Paper Portent

When the poet from Porto
lost his treasured notebook
his head started to feel
like a blood-filled bath.

It wasn’t the loss of shopping list
or the plot for his next novel
that most preoccupied the mind,

just the writerly thought about the
paper-based metaphor for death.

Asparagus Dreams

In my dream
I was attempting to
eat asparagus
without cutlery
or a full set of teeth;

a futile exercise, as it turns out.


Henry is a writer, poet and mental health essayist based in Somerset in the UK. He has a PhD in literature and creative writing from the University of Birmingham. His latest poetry collection, Psychobabble and Snake Oil, is a collaboration about mental health with Dutch artist Marcel Herms and is available from Egalitarian Publishing.

Poetry from Henry Bladon

Ouroboros

Hermetic thoughts rampage

down corridors of uncertainty.

Weather-beaten corners

and fragmented stalactites.

Ouroboros. Benzene ring.

Moon phase dog days.

Hippocampus. Seahorse,

double dragon,

talking underwater.

Silver plated dribble

running round the side of a coin,

drops into a black hole.

Foreign tongue says omnucrescence.

Unwound watch sitting

on the edge of time,

communicating with the dead

through nicotine haze.

Tricked into the wrong answer,

the clock winds on.

Poem from Henry Bladon

as an insomniac

sleep is elusive

so as you lie there

in your bed you

allow your mind

you wander through

the streets of Prague

or the Venetian piazza

and then sweat through

the New York streets

on dog-day parades,

all of which is better

than wedging your eyelids

open with a used toothpick.


Henry Bladon is based in Somerset in the UK. He is a writer of short fiction and poetry with a PhD in literature and creative writing from the University of Birmingham. He is the author of several poetry collections and his work can be seen in Poetica Review, Pure Slush, Truth Serum Press, Lunate, and O:JA&L, among other places.

Poetry from Henry Bladon

Hidden Truth

I said I wanted to know

what was really going on.

He said he found it hard to say,

it was like he had a splinter

in his tongue that stopped

him from telling the truth.

I countered his mysterious metaphor

by telling him in that case I felt

like I’m hidden between

the pages of a novel but I’m not on

anyone’s pile of books to be read.

He said that was too obscure

even for him. He said he thought

it was typical of me and it

sounded too metaphysical

to make any sense at all.

I nearly said, what a hypocrite, but instead

said there’s something illiberal about your attitude,

because I read the term in the paper

and I thought it sounded intelligent

even though I’m not sure what it meant.

As I left, he said nothing.

Which was a first.