Bubblegum Pop

by Chris Buchanan
Poetry, 2013
From the collection Growing Up Too Fast

I want to pipe bubblegum pop through white headphones,
to you in one earbud and me in the other
then drop it on the tarmac as a permanent reminder
when your phone rings and I have to be off.

I want to spend more time in your mouth than crisps
and cling to your teeth at the back, out of sight
and make you crave unhealthy cravings
that your body was never meant to feel so much for.

I want us laminated. Shiny and bright, preserved
with a sun-bleached best-of date that doesn’t matter,
like the empty bag of sweets in your garden by the conifers
with only an out-of-fashion logo to show its age.

We can always see that bag there in the undergrowth,
past its best. Pale, plasticky rubbish wraps look ugly
in the soil, refusing to rot, but you still
don’t want to chuck ‘em.

Dream Serial

by Chris Buchanan
Poetry, 2011

If we’d never left Eden, dreams wouldn’t be
what they are: teasing and muzzy little clips
out of David Lynch films, clumsily halting and cut
as sarcastic parental warnings,
elastic metaphorical taunting from a part
of our minds too dumb or too scared to impart
what it wants to, to us.

They’d be serials. Flashy and marvelous
chunks of adventure, no more ethereal visions,
conjecture, departure, just cliffhangered,
thrilling big-budget six-parters, beginning
on Monday and taking a rest for cartoons,
cheering us up, making us laugh until
in the morning we take a cold bath and complain,
‘Aw, dad. Pirates again! I wanted cowboys this week.’