Dawn – Howl Davies

[A note from Howl: Inspired by a piece of autobiographical haikus by Christine Ray of Brave & Reckless. She reminded me how fun haikus were, and how they’re a great solution to a full on creative block.]

I admire the way
the dawn rolls and recreates
adjacently blind

To the half-drunk boys
and the half-heartbroken girls,
trying to forget

The gristly encore
it’s delayed in its showing
yet it comes around

Not before a glimpse
of the spotlight matinee,
le Cirque du Soleil,

Cleansing rituals
to please the gods of the day
to polish the soul

belongs in daylight, just as
transgressions, the night

And dawn pulls the rope
lifting curtains for each act
blind, deaf, and silent.


[Howl Davies is the ringleader at The Sounds Inside.]

a joke on you-Howl Davies/The Sounds Inside

The Sounds Inside

for once I wanted
to be early,
I wanted to be dignified,
usher out the rain,
my cigarettes are
falling apart
in my fingers,
you cross the road
with out-of-tune elegance,
your fur lined coat looks
and you’re swinging bread
in rhythm with your steps,
a jaunty pace
almost lost amongst
the workers’ fluorescent jackets,
amongst the sirens and the children
crying and the mothers discussing reality
almost lost amongst
the men
and their horses and their futures,
amongst the scrabble to be
someone has to be
the bait,
almost lost amongst
the union boys left out
to dry, the immigrant vegetables
with no place in this climate,
you don’t see me watching,
you don’t see me with my patchwork
personality, my two-day-old stink of
alcohol, my cheap tobacco, my
worn-out pupils, my badge as a member of
a generation of insomnia,
you don’t see me…

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Deaf – Howl Davies

I came back for the silence,
for the roots that were reclaimed
after being torn out the earth
a dozen times, it’s a lonely place,
but that’s all I really look for,
the slack jaw greeting of the mute,
the sense of nothing to hide
like a glass house filled with ghosts,
the kind that don’t frighten me,
there’s a tone deaf dial tone
humming next to my first marital bed
from the last time I was here,
and I keep it close,
for now,
blind to the haram
of undisclosed queries,
away from those constantly
trying to know one another,
but no one knows anyone,
that’s just life.
I’m better here,
in this oasis I’ve built
for myself, with the shrine
on my fathers deathbed
which I still don’t touch,
I’m breaking the silence
with a kick at the door,
or the drop of a glass,
just to ensure I haven’t gone deaf.


[Howl Davies is the ringleader at The Sounds Inside.]


The Sounds Inside

I wrote you a letter
explaining how important it was
for me
to never see you again.
It took me over a year
to send it.
All the while I was
trying to piece together
a life without a future tense.

I tried to stop smoking
for you,
but it never stuck.
There’s a glacial disdain
in the old photographs of us,
we would perch uncomfortably
in condensed clothing and an
illegitimate aesthetic.

There was a soft-focus tenderness,
you weren’t quite pretty,
but you were almost beautiful.
I was hell-bent
on living out a Serbian
montage, and you just wanted
to prove your father wrong.
I discussed shrapnel with him
over Irish whisky
and I just knew he despised me.

You would whisper
of fascists, and of sociopaths,
and of pathological lying
for the sake of creating a reality.
I would reply with the talk of exile,
with hiding my…

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How to have sex with a ghost-Howl Davies/The Sounds Inside

The Sounds Inside

Black crocuses
for a white flag,
tonight we bring the dead
back to life,
the banshees and
saints, absorbed by
their violence,
cultivated by centuries
of silence, I am not
done with you yet,
forgive me,
god-speed son,
you said, before you

I’ve gone this long
under lock and key,
with no intent on exile,
I use it physically for my
more and more.
Don’t lead the horse to the water,
if you are not ready
to drown it,
it should have been us,
that night,
oh fury,
how I want you,

In that confined mess of a
misinformed orgy of bodies
and scripts and curtains
closing, lights blazing,
singing about pockets
overflowing with
wildflowers to
ward off the plague,
there’s a hairline fracture
in every syllable,
in every melody, in every
brief right hook of
regicidal forgiveness,
as we beg those ghosts
for closure.


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Shoreline – Howl Davies

We stand like stones
beside the throes of the ocean,
beneath the gaze of
the holiest of crows
floating above the bones
and wreckage of those lost
at sea, you let your
pride swell and you sank with
an anchor at your feet,
cursing the moon
to let the water just recede,
pleading with every angry
to allow yourself to
swim out in decline,
the commotion of being
born of immaculate design,
you stand alone inside the mountain,
shouting that you want to call god
on a burner
to hide your trail,
to scorn him, to convince yourself
that you aren’t yearning for something
more, learning that there’s
no one there
to stop the drone. What are you
holding to? Solitude
asks nothing of us, and you
shouldn’t be ashamed. Scared,
maybe, but bring that to the
light and up it goes in flames,
four hours wandering
the skin of the sea,
the shoreline adores
and your subtle step.

[Howl Davies is the creator of The Sounds Inside.]