Question & Answer 8 – Anthony Desmond

Question 8

But I believe in you,
and all of your circus tricks.
Especially the one
where you tie the world
to your laces
and carry the weight
with every step,
careful of the moves you make.
I believe in you
and everything you do.
Does that make you feel good?

– Aaron Kent

Answer 8

It is a tingle: one that feels undeserving
as I am aware of certain habits
I shan’t speak… though, realizing humanness
in the softest way
that welcomes your encouragement.
This, yes… this is the way to go.

– Anthony Desmond


Question & Answer 7 – Anthony Desmond

Question 7

My ancestors smoked their way
into the history books.
I went to school proud
to tell my teachers my dad
smoked sixty a day.
Eighty a day.
Perhaps even one hundred.

A kid threw a cigarette
from his car window
and I threw a banana skin
from mine.
His won’t deteriorate,
whereas mine will
feed the foxes.

Do you give back, Anthony?
Do you return to nature?
I’m still thinking
about that banana skin
and a comedy fall
by some Charlie Chaplin

– Aaron Kent

Answer 7

Amongst the trees,
I thought I could be
the same with all of them.
I thought I had to carry
the weight of the world
like a circus act.
My kindness was a show,
free for all to see the fool
whose love was like
a penny face up,
like a coin toss with
a double-faced nickel.
I was spent; my days
were currency in the
pockets of those who
forgot I needed light, too.

– Anthony Desmond

Question & Answer 6 – Anthony Desmond

Question 6

I wish I’d swung a baseball bat
at fluorescent lights –
tore the basement down.
Every day I fear being a disappointment,
and fear seeing my father’s face
in the back of spoon.

How do you cope
with genes you
wish you didn’t
have to wear?

Hum the song, Anthony,
find the lyrics
and turn your mirrors
back to sand.
Remind yourself of the hourglass
our fathers gave to us.

– Aaron Kent

Answer 6

The mirror has been love’s landscape,
as of lately, but droughts can leave
circles of weeds like a hole in a tray
of cigarette butts. This is where my
insecurities pool; the ashes of
my ancestors aren’t enough to
affirm my beauty in these moments.

– Anthony Desmond

Question & Answer 5 – Anthony Desmond

Question 5

I never think of Tom Petty
when I hear ‘Free Fallin’ –
no, instead I see Tony
Soprano, driving the Jersey
Turnpike, fever dreams and
dead friends.

The sun overheard, the shade
of cigarette ash mixed
in blood, kept under the eye
of a yak. No life left to
watch distractions or
murder his

skin cells. Culture sometimes
steals culture. Words sometimes
eat cinema. I sometimes wish
I was more ‘me’. Do your senses
lead you astray? Do you find songs
in scenery?

– Aaron Kent

Answer 5

First times and faces I don’t care
for anymore carry the tune
in certain songs. My life is an
instrumental while I hum for
the moments I’ll never forget
including regrets, a couple
swings I wish I would’ve taken
or days I didn’t fear being
a disappointment.

– Anthony Desmond

Question & Answer 4 – Anthony Desmond

Question 4

I roomed in the stare of the house,
following demons through mirrors
into Constantinople. The family
spun gold coins, silver Magyar
stamps and shattered knee caps
in a recreation of Acton –
home in Redruth.

Our house was infinite, Anthony,
and lay dormant in the fields of Cairn.
Have you sat in the neighbours kitchen
and watched them reenact a TV family?
Known that yours is drawn straight
from the well? We kept crutches
to remind ourselves we could be our father

if we had the right group of friends
to show us the wrong blood fjørd.
I still draw pictures of a loft
where the mice wore tap shoes and bedsheets,
and a child peered over the top
of a wardrobe swearing he’d bash our skulls in
if we ever bought the demons to his nest.

– Aaron Kent

Answer 4

Television is where family
is more than just a word;
it’s a fantasy that makes me sick
to my stomach, almost leaving a
taste of jealousy in my mouth.
Bloodlines are riddled by things
left unsaid, a darkness over
houses where no child should rest.
Behind a door, that when unlocked,
a cup of sugar is offered to every
neighbor with a smile as bright
as the morning sun, so no one dare
believe in thy sinful ways.
Thus, why the closest resemblance
is nothing compared to who’s really
there for you. There are jackals
amongst a pack of wolves and
sheep with shaved lambskin
wearing someone else’s coat
until it’s worn out like an old
pair of jeans you wore that night
the first time you fucked.
These are memories.
Memories that are ripped away
by the very people you’re willing
to lose sleep over.

– Anthony Desmond

Question & Answer 3 – Anthony Desmond

Question 3

We could do 30 of these Anthony,
or 60, or infinite, or pi (and I stop point
one four through this poem). Or
try to re-enact the Fibonacci sequence
by doing question 1 twice, then 2, 3, 5,
8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144 until we collapse
into an exquisitely formed perfect spiral
and decide to agree that we’ll call it all
a metaphor for art, and then spend
days trying to work out what the metaphor
is: cyclical? Repetitive? Downward fall?
What do you think?

– Aaron Kent

Answer 3

The metaphor is a flushing
of innocence from the
purest forms of speech.
A statement can become
convoluted like twisted
empathy from the mouth
of a belligerent child
or clear like the river
I use in a lot of my pieces.
But, we all see differently:
some look in the mirror
and see all the things
one wishes they could change,
while the other—drenched
in a pool of self-acceptance
like a reflection in a lake
where the water is completely

– Anthony Desmond

Question & Answer 2 – Anthony Desmond

Question 2

Did you know
there is evidence of salmon
with the rings of trees?
And you could swim upstream,
declare a war against
the currents – tides are suggesti
ons not reason to follow rules a
nd regulations. Break the dynam
ic of the twenty four hour news
cycle. Our ears are not trained t
o kill the demons of other peopl

– Aaron Kent

Answer 2

I also mimic a bear—
knowledgeable of
the remnants of fish
amongst my progress.

The smell is pungent
like the breath of those
who smile in my face
and talk shit behind
my back.

– Anthony Desmond