Two short poems from John Vaughan

New Growth

One trims his toe-nails
Another gathers up the cuttings
Plants them in the patch of ground
Behind the shed

Someone now supervises
Organises a rota
And watches out
For an earth moment.

A signpost spouts up
There’s now a field of toe-nails
Sturdy enough to be reaped
And lifted into storage silos.


It’s the bad dreams that meat-cut through
the  neck of sleep. Again, there’s blood
on your hands from your torn and stretched
fingers. The branch you are holding is weakening;
the roots of the aspen tug out braids of earth,
dislodge grass and begin to lift and shift stone.
Unable to move, you hang
like a weight.

The nightmare now takes you.
You say a prayer to anywhere. Once more,
you hear a voice but there are no words
meant for you. In the real world no one
is listening; in the real world no one
is breathing.

*John Vaughan went to an evening class in 2003 on writing, re-discovered Poetry, took a Creative Writing degree at the former Norwich School of Art and Design 2005-08, and admits that he has caught the 'poetry bug'. Enjoys writing.

One comment

  1. Hi John, this is other John (from NSAD creative writing). =)
    Good to see you're still writing. I really like the poems, particularly the second – that first line is excellent, so physical.

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