Two Poems by Stuart Laycock


There is
a weird intimacy
to witnessing
face on face
a bit of town
a building
a row of shops
a police station
and after
the full fist of war
smashes it
beyond all
smiling recognition.
Like an ex-lover
where romance
is dead and decayed
and all that lives on
is the ghost of passion.

Dead Box

Do you hear that sound?
It’s the past calling,
lost then, now so found
with the night falling.

The line’s long been dead
but it doesn’t matter.
Stale air fills your head
with the ghosts of chatter.

They’re all still in there
crying, laughing, flirting,
a flick of the hair,
smiling, shouting, hurting.


Stuart Laycock studied Classics at Cambridge and was a writer in advertising. He did volunteer aid work in Bosnia during the war and is now a historian. His collection, Zone – Poems of the Bosnian War, was published by Mica Press in 2015.

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