Cousins of mine—I know of none, except
for one I met in sleep last night—a blonde
with eyes the colour of frozen soil. We fell
in love; but knew it couldn’t be… Desire
and prohibition—as deep as dream, their bond.


To be addicted—isn’t that to live?
To line with substances the body’s pith
in all the walled-in mania of love;
and sink, and get to the bottom of the myth.
To be recurring—isn’t that to live?

— Humphrey ‘Huck’ Astley is a poet and musician based in Oxford, England. His works include the three-part album and stage-show Alexander the Great: a Folk Operetta (PinDrop/PRSF, 2013-15), The Gallows-Humored Melody (Albion Beatnik Press, 2016), and A Christening Sprung from Her Science (Rain over Bouville, 2020). His writing has appeared in various publications including Agenda, The London Magazine, and Poetry London. He is founding editor of The Crank, and an occasional critic.

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