Steven Learmonth – skies
More submissions to our Rob Auton poetry collaboration. Here is a link to part 1. Submissions are open until 26th August, read the guidelines here.
Skies (illustration above)
I grabbed the sky from the crisp winter morning
Screwed it into a bluebird
Threw it up into the empty air
I grabbed the sky from the overcast afternoon
Molded it into a soggy pigeon
Threw it up into the empty air
I grabbed the sky from the full moon night
Folded it into a star encrusted crow
Threw it up into the empty air
Three skies flying like birds
The Birds and the Bees
The birds are mating with the bees
They are doing it
They are shagging
They are bumming
They are rutting
The birds and the bees are making babies,
and the babies are bees with beaks and yellow and black feathers.
They live in hives made from twigs
They sting you and have the ability to poo turds of honey.
Bricks of the sun
One Christmas I received a Lego sun set, on the box was a printed photograph
A sunset from a far off land
Or it could have been England
The set was made up from red, orange, yellow and pink bricks
It contained two small figures, a couple
The couple were not made with regular Lego hands
They had hands that could hold each other
As I began to build the set in the front room with the early morning curtains closed
The light in the room began to change
New shadows appeared
In the box was a pair of children’s sunglasses, and a small bottle of factor 15 sun cream. I put
the sunglasses on, applied the sun cream to my burning arms and continued to build.
Stepping back from my creation the room was full of unnatural light
The flowers on the mantelpiece lifted their heads in confusion
Body clocks broken
I fixed the couples hands together, the man with the raised yellow circle on his square palm
and the woman with the corresponding indented circle.
They stood about a metre from the sunset.
It was finished
The pinks and reds were almost soft fuzzy edged Lego bricks
I lowered my head down to the carpet and looked at the faces of the couple,
The setting of the sun reddening their yellowness
Smiles fixed in position, perfectly dressed in skin-tight clothes
Mum, Dad, come and look at this sunset that Granny got me for Christmas
There was no response
I shouted again
Dad, Mum I shouted come and look at this sunset
I ran through into their bedroom
Wake up wake up. Come and look at the sun set I’ve made
What? Oh the Lego.
We went back through into the living room and all that remained were two long red bricks
slowly sinking into the carpet
The couple were nowhere to be seen
But Dad, where’s it gone?
I want to play with my sunset
With this my Mum entered the room with another box
Rob we forgot to give you this that Father Christmas dropped off for you
We found it under our bed
I opened it, another Lego set
The night sky
Bricks of blacks, blues, purples and a small selection of whites
Remember Son, said my Dad “your sunset doubles as a sunrise”
I’ve got this friend Nigel who works in the sky. He isn’t a pilot, air steward, astronaut or a tower crane driver. Nigel works the weather. He took me up to his place of work once and gave me a guided tour of this warehouse full of weather. The first door we came to had the words blue sky written in black marker pen on the white door. “I need to get some proper signs made for these doors” he said apologetically. Nigel opened the door and the room was full of blue sky. At least I think it was a room, there weren’t any clouds, and I couldn’t see where the walls were or where the room ended. I went to step into the room where the blue sky was kept and Nigel said “WOAH WOAH WOAH. What are you doing?” He closed the door and locked it behind him. I could see a bright light coming from around the corner, he pulled out two pairs of blues brothers style safety glasses and we walked round to where the light was coming from, propped up against the wall were hundreds of forks of lightning. They were all resting against each other like old garden tools in a shed. It was a bit of a mess to be honest. “Nigel mate, you should clean up, that’s expensive stuff that isn’t it?” “What lightning? No. I don’t use lighting that often anyway. There’s the sheet lightning up there look.” I looked up to see the bright sheets varying in size and thickness sat on a large shelf like books. I could see one was dripping from the corner. A small puddle of lightning had gathered on the floor. I pointed it out to Nigel and he mopped it up with a wooden handled mop that hissed and fizzed as he put it back in the bucket.
I couldn’t believe that he was the only person that worked up there. “Yeah it’s a lot of responsibility, but I used to work on a checkout so this is much more interesting for me and there aren’t any customers. I can make people’s day. Did you notice how it was sunny on your wedding day and I couldn’t make it because I was at work? There you go.” Why don’t you ever give us a white Christmas then?
“I just think people might twig that it’s man made weather you know. Here’s the rain tanks look, all the different types of rain in there. Heavy, light, torrential.” The rain was falling to the floor of the glass tanks and bouncing back up to the ceiling and back down like some sort of really miserable screen saver. “Look at those raindrops, they are just waiting. This weather is just waiting to be used. The thing is I get quite attached to it. Look at that cloud over there, I can’t let her go because she reminds me of my Mum. This place is full of old tattered weather, stuff I can’t bring myself to let go. Sometimes it feels like an old people’s home but with old weather instead of old people. You know like 90 year old thunder sitting in a chair waiting to die?”
Errrr yeah ok Nigel I think I better be getting back now. “Ah Rob but I haven’t show you the sunshine yet.” Don’t worry mate I’ve seen it before.
And one more from George Cavanagh, who was at Rob’s show and who seems to have made a t-shirt from the Sky Flyer!
Submissions are still open.
If you are interested then please get in touch with Creature@creaturemag.com and we will send you a selection of Rob’s writing for you to interpret in your own style. As well as this we are also open to general submissions on the sky theme, so don’t hang around, lets get this off the ground! Further info can be found here: http://www.creaturemag.com/rob-auton-sky/