People are many faced. That’s not a bad thing. We have dozens of different characters and personalities that shift and change with our  situation, surroundings and companions.

For many years, I struggled with fitting my own way of thinking into conventional patterns and although I achieved material success by suppressing large chunks of my personality, it left me feeling deeply empty and miserable. I felt like a man clinging to a rope in the dark, terrified to let go but tired of holding on.

I wrote this shortly after I decided to loose my grip and drop into the dark. To be as unusual and unorthodox as I felt like. The menagerie of creatures within the poem are inhabitants of my inner world. Between them and the reality we all share is where I make my home.

These are wonderful places, these….borderlands. 


There’s a pixie in my flat,
And she’s hiding in my bed,
I know you’ll say I’m mad
She’s a phantom in my head,
But I hear her faerie whispers
As she spins her emerald dreams,
Of wonderlands and sapphire sands
And polka dot ice cream

There’s a Balrog in my boiler,
A spirit made from flame,
Who guards the secrets of my heart
And knows my one true name.
You may hear him late at night
As he calls the Sacred Creed,
La ilahi ila allah
His name is Ahmed Al-Majeed.

There’s a cat who walks beside me,
That only I can see,
A one eyed tom with ginger stripes
And he takes care of me,
When I don’t know what to answer
When your faces are a blur,
He whispers words that I should say
And calms me with his purr.

And every other Sunday
At just gone half past three,
The Benou Bird or Pheonix
Comes round to mine for tea.
He teaches me to let go,
He shows me how to leave
My pain and fear behind me
To learn and not to greive.

And sometimes Uncle Pangloss
Will dance with me at night,
We’ll drink to sin
And drown in gin
Taste sweet excesses bite,
And he’ll whip the other dancers
Into that sacred state
Where pleasure blends with pain
And loving melds with hate.

For I live along the borders
Between your world and theirs
And though I look just like you
I share nothing of your cares.
A man beyond emotion,
A dance without a song,
I recognize no rules or law
I see no right from wrong.

So please don’t try to save me,
I’ve found what joy I can,
If I can’t be like others,
I can be my own man.
And those now stood beside me
Are my truth kith and kin,
They’re the ones who love me as I am
Now I’ve let this magic in.

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