look out of the window

I promise you it’s raining & this rabbit

takes too long in the shower

it doesn’t matter under which sink

he slumbered last night

the room is full of steam

a vexed capillary bursting into a season

dead animal in a puddle cherry blossom

lovers come & go like a bloated tragicomedy

the rabbit looking into a faded postcard

make enough plans with enough comrades

who hate each other sufficiently

it’s the same as having no plans

the rabbit has so many plans

long hours dribbling into a drain before

you know what to do with them

walking in the park & sweating

steam rising from the pavement

so embarrassing to think

of this as The Scene

The Scene dribbling into a drain

The Scene rising off a pavement in August

the rabbit packs his bags the fifth time this week

burying pages from an erstwhile confession

in unmarked graves around the city

we all know you’re not calling back


The Rabbit’s written a novella every day this week

why haven’t you?

he omits his recent evictions the strange things one misses such as

whatever object is hit by light first

a cup of mold, for instance

an east facing wall

an afternoon diffused thru a frosted skylight

a lonely sea anemone

fingering its hole for rent

& the rabbit wonders

why no one told him how

lonely that would feel

closes his account on ram.com

fuck like the person you think you should’ve been

the rabbit is in love

with the hottest day last year

he spent all night up

in some rafters ingesting beetles & magick

piss steaming on the pavement outside

drunken arguments & caged trees

a faded postcard burnt like the rest

the soft scent of its song

the rabbit crushes coffee beans into mania & moth’s wings into coffee

lifts two bottles of house red

from a petrol station


glorious sunsets are wholly contingent

on all your shit thrown to the sky

the rabbit’s ears are too eloquent

he heads to some ghost’s birthday party

says happy birthday to halogen light

some dried tea leaves, a dripping sound

inhales a bag of bargain rioja

this is someone’s idea of beautiful

the rabbit listens to a wellness podcast

a former employer forced on him

it demands he centres himself

trust his dopeness

look out of the window

I can promise you it’s snowing outside

the rabbit’s devising a pitch

doped by a glum slurry of river

a rabbity reimagining of some egregiously

mistranslated myth

a Rabbit’s Faust

no one’s done that yet

he’s in the money

a Mephistophelian origin story

the rabbit’s eyes roll back in satisfaction


before he was Mephistopheles

Mephistopheles on hold for four hours

& hating absolutely everyone

sadly wanking his way through

winter & sustained

off warm larger

& salty food

& Mephistopheles

a young rabbit

lonely fat & joyous

isolated on the school camping trip

some other boy calling

Mephistopheles’s mother

a fat slut &

yes Mephistopheles

before he was Mephistopheles

when he was tears & snot

there is nothing erotic in tears, don’t even try

says the rabbit, suddenly shaken

by the vastness of this economy

little rabbit god

palpated verbiage

god of the airport travelodge

of lukewarm coffee & millennial torpor

of zombie architecture &

everyone to whom you money

a spatial diffidence

a vague depression

tessellated in winter mornings

the rabbit smiles


at all the things he was promised

all you were tears, snot

outrageous paradise

a history with no history

to speak of


      just left

         a huge ram

            his head in

               your lap

             run your


       thru him

a sequence of

ancient nouns

vapours rising

from a river

school trip

all you were


was tears, snot

another boy called

your mother a fat slut


a light shower

‘been here before’

is what you say

to yourself

when scared


the air smells of

expensive perfume


rabbit god

Stranger, the snake

& Ram god of

here, before


not rain

Ram lifts

his manhand

his thumb rests

on your chin

‘been here before’

another way of saying

this fear isn’t anything new


'The Word You're Looking For Is 'Mercy'' is a taken from a collection in progress, tentatively titled ’Suburban Baroque’. The poem is concerned with modes of sincerity and confession, drawing from my PhD research into the history of emotions and how they’re represented in contemporary cultural and aesthetic structures.

Al Anderson is a writer and artist born in Birmingham, UK. Recent poems can be found in Spam zine, Fruit Journal, The Suburban Review, Spoonfeed, Blush lit, Datableed and Modern Queer Poets. He co-edits Pigs zine and is a PhD candidate at the University of East Anglia. His chapbook Tenderloin is forthcoming from b l u s h lit in september 2021. 


Al can be found on instagram @al__anderson