Archive for June, 2019

Seven scenes of Father’s Day

Posted in Uncategorized on June 16, 2019 by antonyowen
silhouette of man holding camera taking photo

Photo by edwin josé vega ramos on


In Mayfair a daughter Skype’s her Father in Dubai

he apologises he isn’t there then his phone rings and he isn’t there

she has all the things she could want in the world and she is his world

but he isn’t there, he is in the moment of closing a deal with men, no women.



In Grenfell tower ruins a watch from Portobello market is frozen in time

its face has two hands sweeping across a burnt-out face that is still

the person who wore this watch was the son of an immigrant

someone disturbs his bedsheets and his ashes go home to?



Far from Grenfell tower, The Shard shines like a brand-new pin

a widowed Father explains to his son that life is like London

that his Mother is in the doves of Big Ben when it chimes

spraying out like a lily among the cold grey vastness



In a youth detention centre a young Dad is finding himself for his son

tomorrow he will post a letter littered with spelling mistakes

his grammar is all over the place like his head was that night

when his son read his letter there was no judgement, none.



In Afghanistan the average age of a person is now nineteen and ancient

everyone is a child and as you read Afghanistan what did you see?

did you see the mountains shaking in the heat?

or did you see a person shaken, a soldier?



In Uganda, a miner is pulled from the grounds eye covered in lime

they lay his body on the dirt and ask permission for water

they ask again for permission for water, they ask again

they carry the miner in cotton to a designated plot.



At the council cemetery a Father washes his daughters stone face

he wants to leave working class druids, the princess from Frozen,

an owl with solar-eyes but these items are strictly prohibited

he leaves them anyway, they are removed so soon, like his child.

Our parents grow old in secret

Posted in Uncategorized on June 4, 2019 by antonyowen
arizona asphalt automobile automotive

Photo by Quintin Gellar on


Sometimes in my Father’s frown lines I see lines of a poem written in secret

and I think of pulling a drowned boy from his eyes as he tells me his regrets.

Our parents grow old in secret and kiss their grandchildren like safe ghosts.

I remember my Nan’s smile was never the same in water than on Sundays.

Our parents grow old in secret and I have seen so many things that undo me,

The way my Mother licked her hair black at beautiful spreads at dead weddings

Where instant cameras spat out the eighties like doleites out of Talbot gates.

Our parents grow old in secret and I have felt my Fathers lingering embrace

He is telling me without telling me all the things he wished he had told me.

Our parents grow old in secret and I have heard my Mother singing on her own

And she can hit all the high notes to songs she wrote herself before children.

Sometimes in my Mother’s dreams she skips back to her Mammy and is scolded

By sandals that never stop skipping back to her Mammy, getting smaller and smaller until she stops growing.

If Yemen was Westeros

Posted in Uncategorized on June 3, 2019 by antonyowen
abandoned alone blond building

Photo by Rene Asmussen on

If Yemen was Westeros

we’d all grieve for Kit Harrington’s clean-shaven face,

and comment threads on yahoo would stretch from Winterfell to the Brexit-lands.


Theresa May would sell wildfire to be unleashed on a place that does not exist,

on children that do not exist, on a mother fanning fish-smoke to deter plump flies.


I cried at Kit Harrington’s uglier face –

when Gillette slayed him on a sponsored ad,

the best a man can get is mach-twelve with yet another blade to give the closest shave yet.
Another close shave was a house in mythical Yemen where wildfire missed an evil school,

it landed on a tree that Romans once picked olives from on their way to kill Visigoths.