Issue 19: Tim Allen

Three poems from Mattered by Tangents


it is not possible to borrow a weapon

it is not possible to borrow a scrap of paper

the purchase of superglue can be arranged for you

window bewildered into being witty

fellowship of the Simulacrum misses the boat

room closely questions a stuffed tick

send the Atlantis cabin fever specs

automatic Christening mechanism ignores new species

English reserve given ready-made medal

with maybe one foot in the Museum of Abeyance

there’s a gash in the ranks of hallucinating gastropods

only widows can imagine the eternal


shroud too short to be taken literally

alterations take for ever, literally

remains of telephone book spiked on an antler

the other antler shrouded in mist

given witness protection far too early

you will amount to nothing

your innocence is shallow but genuine none the less 

don’t let the conventional confuse you

small change drop from drug mule history

lost cause guilt planted on donkey jacket

big date assault changes a separate anniversary

some folk could only write poetry after the holocaust


muzzy in the shadow of an emotional thermostat

the machine switched itself on

a metaphorical middle ground

the machine switched itself off

keepsake fatigue

other people are architects or absentee landlords

sub-text sloughs off vicinity in hard-nosed heaven

a mechanical toy made of omelettes and pancakes

roommate peeps in on hot broth feet

regret creeps out on cold soup schist

negative environmental envy

i never wanted to be either different or the same

Tim Allen used to live in Plymouth where he ran the Language Club reading series and edited Terrible Work. He now lives in Lancashire and helps run the ‘Peter Barlow's Cigarette’ events in Manchester. He has published various books with Shearsman, Oystercatcher, KFS, Zimzalla and Red Ceilings. His most recent book, Under The Cliff Like, came out with if p then q.