Villanelle – Starlight

Love is like starlight.
It is unending and enduring;
a guide throughout the darkest night.

Shadow has no chance to fight
Love; a champion defending.
Love is like starlight;

because Love is like the colour white,
a canvas never ending.
A guide throughout the darkest night.

A future looking clear and bright;
the past beyond comprehension
because love is like starlight.

It is blinding and removes our sight
of the things we do not mention.
Yes, Love, is like starlight;
a guide throughout the darkest night.


Sonnet: Lambs

Lambs in fields seem to grow faster each year;
Growing to look like their mothers, before
Winter will come and soon we ignore
their youth, replaced by usefulness or fear.

Their lives belong to the highest bidder
who may have travelled from the farthest shore,
for a new stock to toil in daily chore,
purpose from purchase abundantly clear.

Yes, green and yellow fields are well maintained;
grains and fodder collected for winter,
not all animals purchased are sustained.
Instead the slaughter house is the winner.

But comes back Spring and the fields fill again;
this will be the way until farming ends.


Free Verse – Crying Eyes

Dark dreams;
man’s heart
poisoned. Spit
a work of art.

No defence;
at demonstration.

Crying eyes;
repeated lies.
No surprise;
we demonise.

Speak of truth
or speak of pain;
misspent youth
never the same.

Rotten through,
your core is vile;
cannot swallow
the taste of bile.

Crying eyes;
repeated lies.
No surprise;
we demonise.

Not yet forgotten,
but left behind;
the jail we rot in
is in our mind.

Now disappear,
into the night
and take with you
your tainted light.

I cannot see,
nor do I want
to have you near me
your presence haunts.

Your crying eyes;
repeating lies,
with no surprise.

It’s over.


Article – Dancing On My Own

The DJ’s set began at 9:30pm. The Disco/House/Techno beats are banging and as lively as the DJ himself, whose body ripples and pulses in time with each track. Wine in hand I join the dance floor early, standing alone in the centre of the dark room I begin to move along with him, mirroring his movement and motion. Pretty soon I forget that I am standing in my living room.

Like the majority of the world right now, who are dealing with the Covid-19 crisis, I have been in isolation for weeks. Weeks which have slowly bled together, the time becoming a seemingly tangible barrier between myself and the people I love. 

Like many I have turned to technology to return to the world outside of my own isolation and in so doing found ‘Isolation Booth’ a new and exciting online nightclub run by Lewis Wardrop on Twitch. By day Lewis is a 30 year old Film Producer from Edinburgh, a new father and with the help of his brother Jamie is working to bring a little bit of the club culture into the lives of all those isolated souls who feel cut off from the world, while helping to make Friday nights feel special again.

When I spoke with Lewis and his brother Jamie after last weeks event Lewis was able to tell me a little bit more about the project. The idea for ‘Isolation Booth’ “came during the first weekend of the lockdown…[my friends and I] had a conversation…on my birthday that really was a great indicator of how we can use technology to still feel connected even during lockdown”. The idea to stream live music sets is not entirely new; online services like ‘Boiler Room’ which give people around the world the opportunity to stream live DJ sets that they would otherwise never get to see already exist and do well. Isolation booth seems to emulate the idea that you “can be at home and still feel like you’re at the club.”

But why go to all the effort? “That’s the power of music really…why gigs are so important, why clubbing is so important because you are all in the same room at the same time listening to the same music and getting that same experience and obviously [with] us all being isolated that’s not possible, but then it is because with technology we can replicate that to an extent…It’s something that we all really understand having all visited clubs and understood how important they are as an experience and how it makes you feel. It’s about escapism as well; it’s about getting out of the current situation for a little bit and for us all to forget a little bit about all of the negativity which is going on in the world right now.”

“What I wanted to achieve with it, was to bring people some temporary freedom and joy and just be open and relaxed and not worried about what is going on in the outside world. That is really what clubs are: you go into this space and you leave all of your baggage at the door, you can hopefully just be free in that environment. Without being together it is hard to replicate, but then at the same time maybe this experiment has proven that you don’t always have to be in the same room with people to have that same sense of being united and celebrating.”

Lewis’s brother Jamie added “It really tired us out, but that was actually really good right now…there are different types of exhaustion that we are all experiencing; the exhaustion of anxiety and fear are obviously very tiring, but what our brains aren’t doing, but what the clubs or ‘Isolation Booth’ can allow [is for] the brain to just be parked a little bit in whatever music is playing…like a trance space.”

For Lewis sharing music and dance is like tapping into “something that is a bit more primal within all of us, dancing like that does block out a bit of the modern day noise that we all have going on in our heads” an admirable cause in and of itself, however ‘Isolation Booth’ is about more than just distraction. It is a marker. It is something to look forward to and it brings with it a sense of community and togetherness. Lewis added that “we are creating it on a Friday night to try and replicate that Friday night energy. When everyday feels the same…there is no definition for the days. What does the weekend really mean when four days a week I’m home anyway? Having Isolation Booth… or that moment to look forward to [on a Friday is] important.”

For me I don’t know what the world is going to bring at present, and each day brings with it a certain uncertainty; but I know where I am going to be tonight at 9:30pm. With everyone else at ‘Isolation Booth’ dancing on my own:

Sonnet – War & Peace

Are you at peace, with the war between us;
How many more battles must we begin?
We fight a war neither of us can win
And while it would seem that this is obvious

Still instead of feelings we create fuss.
Yet I am drawn in, much to my chagrin
Long before I can take it on the chin
I say words, feeling as though I am just.

Those words come back to haunt me even now
Long after it has finally ended
There after I have made a solemn vow
To take time, until my heart is mended.

For loving just to be loved in return
Like playing with fire, it hurts when it burns.


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