Gordon Scapens has been widely published over many years in numerous magazines, journals, anthologies and competitions, most recently winning first prize in the Brian Nesbit poetry award.



The world can shrink
to the town lived in.

A town can shrink
to a lonely room.

A room can shrink
to the only window.

The window looks out
on a shrinking horizon.

On the horizon, a figure
resembling the watcher.

One step more
and the view is empty.

The weight of life
rests on us all,

and the  beginning
shrinks to the end.

© Gordon Scapens



Shadows of bare trees
dance against the blinds
threatening the early hours.
Sleep has thrown me off
like a rodeo horse
that now runs away.

Beside me, her breathing
is the perfect shore
with a vast ocean
of riotous blood between us
that I can’t navigate.

The clock stares me down
and tells lies to my face
about slow motion time
I don’t understand.

Barely audible noises
search the by-ways
of a restless body
to hint at secrets.

No horrors stalk the house
but night follows a map
plotting my instincts,
will accept all the demons
queuing to rent my head.

They’re all home-made.

© Gordon Scapens




We push and pull
current topics to fit
our own idea of a window
with an enlightened view.
With wall-to-wall righteousness,
raw opinions are fortified
by replenished glasses.

Well meaning, articulate,
we try to make sense
of whatever life seems to be,
but only picture each other
in the kind of world
that fits our preconceptions,
wanting to buy it
from whoever our god is.

Although faces are smiling
there’s an underlying resignation
to a collective realization
that controversial comments
are rounded off with words
normally not fitting our mouths.

We all want to save
what we think we have
but only for ourselves,
knowing no proper answer
to the secret of life.
© Gordon Scapens