Alex Glynne

from Sonnets for You


Poems are made of birds not ideas.
In the rented garden, you see this   this little brown thrush for instance
(the spirit of Gerard Manley Hopkins) 	this…
but what are you made of? 	If the soul exists, surely it is this little island
Off the south coast of Gibraltar, named after    Joan Miro
Surely it is an absence		who said that?
There is a rock there (on that island) and on that rock
a church, and on that church a goat (Thomas Merton)
but how to find it? Self-enquiry? Auto-fiction?
Gerard Manley Hopkins lifts one wing
and then another	How would that be? you wonder
to be a birdy wholly birdy, to have no questions.
Boring?			       Empty?
Maybe		but he can sing	     though


A hand carved Welsh love spoon
one of a set of two
                                     south westerly wind, rising
loss 		            (a pervasive sense of
the Grundrisse der Kritik der Politischen Ökonomie
and a bee  	 an hour in the tub with Paul Klee
on Modern Art	   and to show for it?
A deepened sense of line   utopian feeling    pruney fingers 
We are reminded, at certain points, of Rodins’ Thinker; at others
               an almost total failure of vision, really.
Would it be twee to identify some kind of theme
here?  I think so      yes	 	remember the igloo?
               How about a symbol?
                                                 Where’d that bee go?

from 18 Small Windows


The content we deserve or the content we desire? 
‘Bear’ sits next to guy. But why? I like your post
radicalpoet65, but not the avant stylings of your response.
A Jeff Koons retrospective, wild fires, 
that look in Elons’ eyes when heavy falcon banks 
then, slowly, comes in to dock. An abandoned branch 
of Northern Rock. A lot of people don’t open themselves up to art 
and this is why. Bored, I begin to VLOG.
There are, as I speak, 13 species of lemur extant
in this comment section alone. 12, 11, 9.
Ever wonder what happened to parkour
and all the brave young men who risked their lives 
scaling the banks and offices of yore? Nor do I. 
You can’t hold back the tide with a broom.
And yet here you are, little thing. And yet here am I. 
Here we both are together, the day
spread out before us like an influencer on a table.
An open window, a slight disturbance in the weather.


Merkel’s putative zoom fail; vegan vs keto.
What we need here is a dubstep intro, a frozen pizza. 
Hey Keanu, do you think the man killed by log a meme
constitutes a new order of simulacra? 
What about the log killed by a man meme? 
Stop staring at me. I enjoyed your brief epochal cameo
in the rivers and waterways of Indochina 
but, alas, this is farewell, Asiatic Softshell Turtle. 
You have transcended the limits of your genre.
The most 90’s thing I’ve ever seen? A future. 
That adolescent dream that, like my adolescence,
persists, improbably. Like an anxiety disorder. 
Like a rainbow or fake IPhone on Alibaba.
What we need here is a theory, some insulating foam.
Did I ever tell you about the time Bob Ross
appeared as my spirit guide on ayahuasca?
Come closer, my ephebe. Close the window.
Ignore for now the forest fire, the buffering icon. 


Going to Ikea on a Saturday: bad idea.
How many lives is that left now? 
Obscenely rich but oil poor, I don’t think
we’re in Venezuela anymore, Todo. 
But how do you feel about these shorts? 
This giant rare earth mine—the paisleys of 
the radioactive tailing ponds, miles long, 
come in mineral aquamarines, ochres, taupes.
Pretty sure my Charizard just went into toxic shock.
I guess I’d hoped for more from my time here
that is, on earth. You know what this reminds me of?
The last trip I took to Burning Man: a thousand swans 
burst from forehead of the Bezos avatar
as a projector showed looped footage of 
Kim Jon-un and Trump coming into hug. 
That was it. No fires, no trance, no drugs. 
For a long time after I thought I was God.
Up until my crypto coin tanked, I probably was.

Magnolia (Five Entries from a Journal).


Passing by today I had the sense of being watched. No, that isn’t right.
Of being seen. No, still more. Of being witnessed. That was it. By you. And,
soon after feeling apprehended, I had the further sense of belonging to a cast,
a cast of other like individuals. The naked house guest, for instance,
say halfway through his host’s wife’s girdle; the cheating spouse; the burglar and peeping Tom.

Guilt united us. That much was obvious. Guilt in some form. But what was it, exactly, 
about your sombre apparition that arrested us, each, all, so effectively? I
had to ask myself; or rather, that was the question you posed,
stood there in the early morning twilight, still largely nude in late December

wearing the fog like a negligee.


One snapped twig. A fallen leaf. A puddle, shattered. Two startled koi.

Are we getting any closer?

That, alas, I found I couldn’t answer.

So I consoled myself in the usual way. With the opera. With Madama Butterfly 
I bade you almost totally farewell... that is until the last scene, in the last act.
I mean of course when Butterfly erupts so audaciously into that last, trilling aria;
I mean of course when I felt that familiar thrill— less at what I heard
than at what rose up inside me in response— what rises up in all of us in the presence of the diva.

I mean of course when I heard my own wild, implausible song. I drew the curtain. 
I drank you, in a manner of speaking, in. But alas (again) for it was gone (my song).

Was it ever there, or just a rumour?


Yesterday your first full flower. Today another... and another.

I wrote: 'A kind of wild, genital flamboyance'; I wrote: 'Not nakedness itself but its performance’;
I wrote: 'No, performance itself laid bare'.

Well, as you'd imagine, that all went swiftly in the bin.

But that colour. I had to have it. It took me until 2.00 to place it.
Christmas 89, a boy of three (me) receives a gift, a gift in deference to an obsession—
the music of one who, in this dimension at least, between the years of 78-93
went by the name of Prince. I had heard Love Sexy. I had seen the videos on MTV.
But nothing could’ve prepared me for this. Unwrapping Graffiti Bridge that is,
and being faced with so unabashedly, so outrageously, yes, those lips.


The gap between the lightning and the thunder. 
Between the two front teeth of Bridgette B. Between poverty and plenty.

Needless to say I came down in my robe today to find you had exploded.
Utter plenitude. Utter potpourri meets Pussy Riot. Utter... everything.
And yet there was something missing. I’d like to say that you seemed poker-faced
but that would be a nonsense. I’d like to say that, in your weird repose at least,
I found the riotous and the subdued to be bedfellows; I found silence at its loudest; 
I found the garish…

as I said, a nonsense— but as I watched your boldest petal begin to tremble, then fall…

I had the sense that, how can I say it, somehow it was a knowing eyebrow
                                                                                                                                     slightly raised.


Then lowered. That was a month ago. I think it snowed.
And now? Do I see your first bare branches already peeping through?
Inevitable I suppose. Look at disco, monogamy.

I think I feel the way Pierre Magnol must have felt
the day he gave away his name to you at the altar of taxonomy.
Which is to say, I have no idea how I am feeling.

The sense of loss is quite astonishing; but how explain this buoyancy? Simply
I will sit here and watch your cream and purple petals
drift away— and they are drifting now at quite a rate.

Should I remember or forget you? Whatever. Whatever helps to get me through,
to endure the yearly drought of you, that entirely regrettable duration

Aka ‘the summer’.

Alex Glynne is 35 years old. He lives in Cornwall, in the UK, and works as a special 
educational needs teaching assistant. These are his first published poems.
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