Peter Kenny – two poems

Little bastard

State of it: the grubby jumper
all black and white
and inside out.

The mother’s flown for work
so get rid
before the feathers poke from its skin.

It loiters on the lawn
or, in the rain, presses
into the insufficient privet.

Rake tines! Its knee torn,
the grass darkens, the socks
and claws get sticky with colour.

Wrong to let that bird indoors,
to see it beak at white slice,
its plastic black pupils

fixated by the television 
and a grey flower
that opens for children.


Jack Daniel’s

I want to explain about the platform.
I want to stop pretending
that I was not terrified

when you stepped to the edge
to read the cross track poster
about a sweet American whiskey.

And even when you wavered,
not jostled but tempted by the thought
of those shiny, whip-cracking rails,

even on the brink of abandonment
to dark matter a bazillion years
from here or Tennessee:

I was still with you.
Why can’t you understand?
I have always been with you.

Peter Kenny writes poems, comedy plays and horror short stories. With Robin Houghton, he co-hosts the Planet Poetry Podcast. His poetry publications include Sin Cycle (e.ratio, New York 2020), The Nightwork (Telltale Press, 2014) and A Guernsey Double (Guernsey Arts Commission, 2010). He blogs at

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