Three poems from Mattered by Tangents



it is not possible to borrow a weapon
it is not possible to borrow a scrap of paper
the purchase of superglue can be arranged for you
window bewildered into being witty

fellowship of the Simulacrum misses the boat
room closely questions a stuffed tick
send the Atlantis cabin fever specs
automatic Christening mechanism ignores new species

English reserve given ready-made medal
with maybe one foot in the Museum of Abeyance
there’s a gash in the ranks of hallucinating gastropods
only widows can imagine the eternal




shroud too short to be taken literally
alterations take for ever, literally
remains of telephone book spiked on an antler
the other antler shrouded in mist

given witness protection far too early
you will amount to nothing
your innocence is shallow but genuine none the less 
don’t let the conventional confuse you

small change drop from drug mule history
lost cause guilt planted on donkey jacket
big date assault changes a separate anniversary
some folk could only write poetry after the holocaust




muzzy in the shadow of an emotional thermostat
the machine switched itself on
a metaphorical middle ground
the machine switched itself off

keepsake fatigue
other people are architects or absentee landlords
sub-text sloughs off vicinity in hard-nosed heaven
a mechanical toy made of omelettes and pancakes

roommate peeps in on hot broth feet
regret creeps out on cold soup schist
negative environmental envy
i never wanted to be either different or the same




[Tim Allen used to live in Plymouth where he ran the Language Club reading series and edited Terrible Work. He now lives in Lancashire and helps run the ‘Peter Barlow's Cigarette’ events in Manchester. He has published various books with Shearsman, Oystercatcher, KFS, Zimzalla and Red Ceilings. His most recent book, Under The Cliff Like, came out with if p then q.]

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Allen, all rights reserved. This text may be used and shared in accordance with the fair-use provisions of Copyright law. Archiving, redistribution, or republication of this text on other terms, in any medium, requires the notification of the journal and consent of the author.