i
Nauseous. What force it has the solid wall
a high tackle or breeze block dropped across
your torso and the gut like gallons of bleach
swallowed and being horizontal means an awful
free-fall where you jolt involuntarily to wake but
don’t. It cannot be lawful moral real the law
of averages you stand before is endless; sheer

ii
On the bright or shaded sidewalk an absolute
envelops you like night or like a spotlight.
The wretched the leper of sorrow how your
breath is shallow. You are narrow glass.
You are a large cheap silver-backed mirror
smashed to shards, into breathless glass.
You start to make out lists but stop.
You watch a girl approach the lights and cross.

iii
The shower is the best place to sob.
Its noise is muffling and fast as they do drop
the tears are all escorted to the drain
and extensive treatment in the plant.
In the tub Katherine’s laugh would cut
through Dungannon rugby club
before she shouts All Clean, All Clean
and falls about the bath again.

iv
You are at a loss alas alack and head
to the library in shades to hide
your puffy eyes and a pure urge to halt
passers-by and tell them everything but don’t.
You do not know how to stop it.
You go into the toilet in the basement
and you vomit, getting some on your trousers
and some of it smeared in your hair.