Andrew Muggeridge

notes on disconnect

i long to know what you feel like;
to reach my fingers through your skin,
tiptoe through tripwires
of vessels and veins
and to pull out a bone.

pause for a moment:
grind it (with force) into sugar crystals,
rehydrate into cement
and boil with rose petals –
to see how nourishing you truly are.

i’ll take… a rib,
you’ve a glass cabinet to spare
a handful of white sickles
chainmail linked, sweetness intact.
the vultures won’t swarm

unless breathing is shallow, deep
in the retreat of your bedsheets
you told me that you didn’t fear death
just dying,
or living,
or the two intertwined
like being tangled in still heartstrings
or drinking from the wrong chalice.

how somber!
your lips don’t move as you speak
and your voice sounds distant, unfamiliar
with marionette inflection.

what’s happening?
why you?

i pour photographs into the fireplace
and kiss the coals alight,
place two rings upon the mantelpiece
with five fingers
all but one tooth
and forget to close the door behind me.

i met a woman by the roadside
and she sold me two strawberries
in exchange for a lung.
i hope that i see her again.

notes on disconnect by Andrew Muggeridge was highly commended in the Sentinel Literary Quarterly Poetry Competition (November 2019) judged by Oz Hardwick

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