Discover more from Perverse
Thank you for giving PERVERSE such a lovely warm welcome back last week! Here’s the second segment of this issue for you to enjoy — it’s all sweet creeps, snakes and robots…
Thank you for reading PERVERSE!
(FYI if you are reading this on a mobile phone, it may be best to turn the phone sideways. Some of the poems are displayed as images, so make sure you’ve clicked “show images” at the top of this mail. If you'd rather read these poems in a PDF you can do so here, in this archive of previous issues.)
Mr Whippy wants my heart
to get me 99 flake fresh
till I swoon beneath the cream
of the sky’s lactic tongue
let’s be kids again — aren’t we
There’s some disintegration you haven’t done
that drapes the look of naked over bone.
There’s some disintegration you haven’t done.
You’re flesh. Since mine has gone
I am only bone.
Can we discuss the absence of eye and brain
in seeing and knowing you? No skeleton
should be alone.
May we sit here a moment?
An old bowl in the sun.
Nakedness fits us all so don’t
insist on more than a memory of skin.
I have lost my bare surface. I’ve had to learn
to drape the look of naked over bone.
Just like a snake I crave the burn the summer traces on my skin on every glimpse the sun may seize of it as it peels away and the new delays its thickening—despite a certain swelling thirst and a sane amount of wariness. As we walk on the sunny side at snail pace and trail our sugarcoated legs and slime, my ankles turn relentlessly. Would we hold hands, would we, if we were sure to get it back afterwards? No. Now: isn’t this bus stop a safe place, a haven for poultry’s remains where I shall pompously declare: Communism looks good on you (even though your faith has faded). Spit—thrown off bridges and balustrades, travels by means of gravity, through time, and sometimes hangs in mid-air, defying expectancy. When you say I love you, I say of course, who wouldn’t, betraying disbelief. Shade—in woodlands, shed its flattering light shyly on one side of your face, hiding rings and wrinkles. The B-side of mine grinds against the rocks and the eyes go milky; erosion scatters our scales around. Stray dogs follow us to the cliff edge in a crocodile line until we run out of food
Tick the box to prove you are not a robot
I think I’d be able to get a little bit of a little bit more on the next day or so I can get a little bit more time to get it down before I get back to the office and then I’ll be back in the next hour and a half to get hold of you and I’ll give you a call when you get back in town and I’ll give you a call when you get back in the next hour
Wolf came a little bit more than a half hour ago and I think I’d be able to get a little bit more than a half hour ago and I just thought I’d give it a try and try to get it down before I get back to the office
Sunset is beautiful and the weather has been so kind and so kind of a little bit more than a half hour ago and I just thought I’d give it a try and I just thought I’d give it a try and try to get it done before I get back to the office
I cut my hair off and then I just wanted to make sure that you were OK and you didn’t want me back in my room so you don’t worry I’m sorry I don’t worry about it I just thought I’d give it a try and try to get it done before I get back to the office
I’m sorry to say I don’t know if I can do that I have a little time for a couple of days really sorry to hear that I am really sorry for you really sorry for your inconvenience you guys are doing well and I just wanted to make sure that you were able to get hold of me and I just thought I’d give you a call when you get back in the next
The stars are so much better than the other apps I’ve been using and it would have been so good for me to try and get them back to you so fuck the number of people in the world and the number of people in space and the number of people in the tree and the number of people in the park and the number of people in the cupboard and the number of people in the walls
Rainbow is beautiful but it doesn’t add much I’m sorry so I can do that for a while and then you can get it done before I get back to the office and then I’ll give you a call when you get back in the next hour or so
Poetry is the best thing to do with the other stuff that I have to do with the other stuff that you need for the other stuff that you have done for me a little bit more than you can get a little bit more stuff to get done before I get back to the office
I regret that I have to do it a little bit more than I just thought I’d give it a try and try it a bit before the game but I think you would have to do it with me and I just wanted to make sure that you were able to get the bread that’s all I’m sorry I’m really sorry
Poppy Cockburn is a London-based poet. Her first pamphlet, Feed Notes, was published by If a Leaf Falls Press earlier this year and her pamphlet, Waiting Room, was published by Invisible Hand Press in September.
Note on ‘sweet creep’:
“I always find ice-cream van music eerie, like a pied-piper’s call. Hearing it one afternoon triggered thoughts of lost innocence and the sinister undertone of how consumerism stealths into the young psyche, which led to me writing this sing-song-ish poem.”
Claire Crowther has published five pamphlets and four collections of poetry. Her current collection, Solar Cruise (Shearsman), was awarded a Poetry Book Society Recommendation for Spring 2020. She is Deputy Editor of Long Poem Magazine.
Note on ‘The difference’:
“I wrote ‘The difference’ as part of a forthcoming collection of poems, Triple Couple, about living with a widower. ‘The difference’ is written in the voice of his lost first wife; she is speaking to me, his current partner. There is an element of autobiography in this collection but not, of course, in this poem. There have been no conversations with the dead. Yet, I am always having them.”
Alonē Etimis — formely Marie-Pascale Hardy — is an artist whose practice extends across poetry, performance, vocal and visual art. She has lived in Quebec, London, and Berlin, before taking refuge in the mountains, where she writes and rests. Her words have appeared in journals such as Hotel, Poetry London, Pamenar, Tentacular, Burning House, SAND, FU Review and stadtsprachen.
Note on ‘meander’:
“aimless walks with a dear, ambiguous friend. the poignant impulse to capture the melody that rose from the gaze coming in contact with surfaces. the apparent metamorphoses of all creatures, things.”
Claire Carroll writes about the intersection of nature, desire and technology. Her writing has been published by Lunate, Dust Poetry Magazine, perhappened, Reflex Fiction and Short Fiction Journal, amongst others. In 2021 she was shortlisted for The White Review Short Story Prize.
Note on ‘Second Interview’:
“‘Second Interview’ was one of several short stories and poems that were written during the lockdowns of 2020. The piece responds to ideas of parasocial relationships, technology’s intervention on desire, and digital intimacy.”
Olivia Tuck’s poetry has appeared in several journals and webzines, and she is soon to begin an MA course in Creative Writing – Poetry at UEA. Her pamphlet Things Only Borderlines Know is published by Black Rabbit Press. She tweets @livtuckwrites.
Note on ‘Tick the box to prove you are not a robot’:
“I rarely write experimental poetry, but in one of my undergrad uni modules, we were set the task of ‘being a little Beat’. I was playing around on the Messages app on my phone, typing words and hitting the middle button to see where autocorrect led me. I ended up with something robotic and nonsensical, yet my tutor and millennial/Gen Z classmates found it eerily sensical!”