Issue 17: Robert Sheppard

                                            EMPTY DIARIES 2001-2014

2009: Hellstew Microblog

my teeth were my own that was clear

a real 22-year-old California college grad

marketing my ‘maidenhead’ in Nevada

he picked me up like a global rag doll

my minger variations on beauty’s hard mile

are publicly executed with indifferent violent strokes

that mean something but not what he thinks

he’s acting in North Korea for distributing

the Bible some religious legal groups are

objecting to the sexual sale he fucked me

impassively from behind and I

paid in spittle in trouble and high heels

lusting in gusts from blowing kisses on webcams

(I’m cut short like my hair          long bangs          my session with studs

2010: Trolling for Dummies

rows of teeth-like hooks line its inside and attach

to a man’s penis during penetration that was a waste

of a cock ring says Chloë pointing at Fuckeye’s terminal seepage

you always twist into sexual hard exchange and blind fur lusts

in Mama’s fig replies Zoë as her scimitar delivers Chloë’s head clean

it rolls through the fridge doors of Plunderhead’s witness slams shrink-wrapped

into female form nothing stands up for the little man if he tries to remove it

it will clasp even tighter women’s attendance can remove it

Plunderhead takes a long look at my long passage and decides to move

the body she claims self-defence

he cannot pee or walk when it’s on Zoë says at the church service

do you still have your tonsils cavities for God’s sore thumbs

she tells us about her baby-brain boiling with phantom smells

red-faced and rouged after dabbling in Chloë’s reticule

2011: Chloë Robosigns for an iPad2 Kindle App to secretly read 50 Shades of Grey in Public or: link suburbanmum@nobranopants to

the rounceval’s attorney disagrees suffering harm or damage during

recreational sex is no different than slipping over slit depending

in the shower or being beheaded in Mecca for murdering a Saudi woman

Plunderhead ties back her hair thoughtfully before clamping the metal frame

he wears his loose honeybear suit but 3D glasses present the subman perspective

the pink gas mask filters the graffiti-world old-skool bird-caged

leather straps stretch open her mouth like a speculum tonsils raw

Stonehead’s moulded into his own skull so tight his eyes pop

strong hands on soft shoulders he moulds her

and the full bladder he commissioned sexy handcuffs change in lust

and bring fur coats to the babe’s fig pie recipes

I’m thrilled the soundtrack is Amy Winehouse and Karman

singing in her blue tent or my GF’s pigtails shaking at Eng-er-land

her gland-gushing accompaniment to his visible arousal

2012: Op-Doc: Instagram Selfies of Stiffies

Fabulously fierce in Givenchy and Gucci guide women

transform technology yet at the age of 35 Zoë is in the best shape

of her life she’s the faith healer who beat six neophytes

to death during exorcism rituals Plunderhead’s

bundles of women’s hair (his aggregate trophy) wriggle towards

daylight to look at business life with a female gaze to see their

bodies break down Fuckeye’s things flip out and up free gifts

red legs cut from dancers perform mid-step across

the Extended Mind he conducts along the entire length of his length

one of his victims is an American podcaster and internet personality

best known for her abject grump coruscant bling around her babyface

all my searches end in designer labels D+G glasses glued to my nose

it’s a skill every woman should have to see who’s best

at throwing rubber chickens in engendered manacles

2013: A Datasexual Self-Interrupts to Google Zoë’s Brain Map

by endangered man-parts

she’s flogged and then hanged

in a culturally gendered mononormative

context straight out of the comedy flop

into the start up not playing catch up he

casts my pants on my face and I see him

through the gauze preparing himself

Wikipedia gives me several surnames

women have a huge

effect on the way men go through the rubber

band cycle I lick it up

like a cat wrapped in a blanket

tattoos fly across my back dagger down my spine

I’ll fuck-up those unemployed men pretending in suits

2014: Haptic Feedback Under Chloë’s Chandelier of Glass Butt Plugs

Zoë creeps up behind Stonehead and atomises him

with a greasy pole I’m queen of reality mouth overflowing

after the sixth I turn to Chloë and dribble into hers

mother bird and chick a stringy strand of seedy spittle

‘nasty’ is the studied way I receive a spouting hiss

Plunderhead’s doing his best to be good convinced that he’s planting

Brontë at the edge of a gulch a moan in a burkha stoned

crumpling over the feet of the next aspirant votive offerant

soaked red as the whimpering lump slumps kicked in the ditch

he shoots-off (off-message) as my twin attention sluts lust for his lips

and so it’s the roof of the Bank with a view of St Paul’s for me

as I flick off Fuckeye’s revenge porn thrust out one lustrous heel

and boot futurity in the humpty-dumpties

Robert Sheppard’s selected poems History or Sleep are published by Shearsman. His autobiographical Words Out of Time is published by Knives Forks and Spoons and his critical work The Meaning of Form in Contemporary Innovative Poetry is published by Palgrave (US). ‘Empty Diaries’ is a continuation of the sequence now found in Complete Twentieth Century Blues (Salt). He lives in Liverpool, is Professor of Poetry and Poetics at Edge Hill University.

Copyright © 2016 by Robert Sheppard, all rights reserved. This text may be used and shared in accordance with the fair-use provisions of Copyright law. Archiving, redistribution, or republication of this text on other terms, in any medium, requires the notification of the journal and consent of the author.