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Imran Khan


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Listen. The night makes a terrible witness,
so give me your soft-target trade rituals,
the brochure of relics dense in your cut dark.

A work experience fuckboy, circus themed orgy parties,
I've memorised every desire sauced from your flesh.

I’d sought God to powder my ache, you lusted for the hive, honoured maps of want.
You stoke your fires, I won't soothe the char.

I see you now, gathering little hells.
Carousels of buried selves grappling for attention leap
out new mouths of shame. The gums suck out my sunlit harmonies,
pleasure rays fanned, pimples pressed to my debris.

Something clicked at communion, our priest hung bulbs round my ascent.
I ate his bread, thought of the wildness you and I might satiate, rioting against each other,
travelling belly-full.
I beg, whatever hell you straddle next, take me with you.

Gut before Take-Off

Rinsed-out bottles in her uncle's backyard, bobby pin cut, bent
crooked I slid, woke writhing,
one arm stuck in last night’s celebration,
splinter-fucked and searching for something.

Anne shouts powder past my tongue,
to her we're shapeless and un-castable.
A director's love will need revisiting,
assistant or not, Annie’s is no different.

At least my arm is something solvable,
strapped with a thong, cast straight in a cola bottle.

As we wait for the medics,
silence spreads a rash of doubt. I smell her monologues sour,
rhythms composed to gnaw back form.

I pretend the open space
isn’t something between us,
then that she isn’t carving get-away scenes
along her edge of the ambulance,
but in no time, she’s speaking the lines,
polished, rehearsed,
chewed fresh language against her bored tongue,
by the get-out reclaiming
what it was I'd kept from her.

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