Oliver Sedano-Jones

Oliver Sedano-Jones is a British-Peruvian poet. His psychobiography of the current POTUS, Donald Trump: The Rhetoric was published by Eyewear Publishing in 2016, as was his first chapbook, chronic youth, which was reviewed in the Times Literary Supplement in 2017. His poem ‘nU tXt’, was noted with pleasure at the 2018 Yeats Prize.


try to drink this

I see it
your expectation undulating like the ass of a feather
or the meaty rectangle of a horse in a reservoir
and when I see it I feel all superior for a second
as if I’ve discovered the secret of life forever
and now the movie screen can fade to credits
over the frothy pots of my eyes, which also see it:
spreading like a forehead in fishbowled reflection,
or hilarious nonchalance in a chronic codependant
as you approach the darkly overstaffed receiving centres
of my eyes … which I may have already mentioned …
are frothing pots to which you’ve turned for refreshment
stumbling in my door like a slug through hot sand.
Will you, please? Have I offered enough…?


Back when the future was an unread email


That unfelt time magical like spring weather,
clever app design, a good editor

(brilliant, invisible).

A frictionless time, good for slipping down 
the throat of the beast, savings stored in damp jaws

(fragile eggs, each moment’s ego). 

An easy time, grooving with the trees, getting down 
to their ultrachill sway&flutter

(a winter’s leaf, still slothfully green).

A casual time, slowdancing with the tide 
as it undresses the sand with percussive persistence

(a dilatory wave…

big tongue lolling and scrubbing the beachheads
down to a mirrorlike shine

… a snailtrail assassin).

A bestial time, licking its face in slow white
circles, encouraging my stillborn rose to bud

(a thin black tongue, a torpid alarm).


A time so fresh and loose I let my attention wander
for decades, it seemed, like Cain or Jeff Mangum.

Woke up six years into a Netflix binge, bloated 
and whirring. And unbelievably thirsty. The rose 

had become a warrior – a keyboard warrior – 
name deeply feared by those who tremble

under their weight of imperfections.
Don’t let this happen to you.


We were so in touch with nature then, 
weren’t we? 

Back in the days of email, 
painstakingly writing everything by thumb.


In that time unfelt the hours in secret were crying
like boys with kicked-in balls, boys who used to be 

budded flowers, who dreamed of being storm gods
with argent fingers flashing under swollen grey 

knuckles, jabbing at giant keys while the beasts 
all cowered in their uncomfortable forests.


These days I measure my wealth in selfies,
not hours. Polish glinting antique faces 

with all my native skill. See, I have
an endless appetite for encoded moments,

bite-sized slices off memory’s great ham hock.
I feed them to the ocean, byte by byte

but it just clicks its giant tongue, demanding
seconds, always more seconds 

of which I have so few left it feels like
a big pile of sand with its face melted off

by the hungry waves these weightless 2D prints
have totally failed to contain and yet

addicted to my loom I keep on spinning



Here’s the time I carried the monster home in my jaws,
stashed it with the others under the mattress,

sad, moony faces hazing down. And here’s the time 
the storm gods were made flesh, sucking and slurping 

meatily at my borders like tidal fluid, pale gluttons oozing
through my chambers on youthful, sparkling hipthrusts

gasping on each like phobic fish. Is this too much? 
I close my tabs and think.

Should I share the time I broke a baby salmon on a stone?
Or the time I was as unhappy as a colon followed by an open bracket.

Or what about the time 
I swore that if I hit thirty without going majorly major I’d –


Be a wilted boy with petals of carved ice
awake in the cracks of his choices

as the sunrise flares with overfiltered agony.
Blearily cremating his teary photo albums

frame by frame, because the sky’s a gelid blue
and his beast hides have become passé.


It’s time. My eyebrows dance expressively as I airbrush.
The cursor rolls over imperfections like a very large

tongue – again – blurring things so they’re beautiful
like a novelist filling a character’s death 

with loads of gratuitous detail, herds of sheep
or packs of wolves, or annoying sunsets, or greedy oceans.

My room is full of open chilli tins and bad ham.
I think my PC’s crystal light has seeped into my skin

and turned me slightly rainbow, like a fish
fresh from paddling in an oil slick. I flick a switch

and MJ’s Greatest hits blare bold. I dance
through their waves and ripple

as if I’ve always known how. Do my best
to forget all the things that have happened to me

so terrible I shouldn’t let myself go on.
The past is my recycling bin, auto-emptying.


In that unfelt magical time I lived
in little collages like everyone.

Didn’t see the great knife opening
my future. Subject line: you were not

outstanding among your generation,
were you? Didn’t exactly make vegan

famous, did you? I nod like a chick
pecking grain. Yes: I lived unfelt

in collages like everyone, could not feel 
myself cooling underground 

like an emerald, my aging dreams 
hardening like the licked bones of beasts

with the unsated eyes glaring, tongues
lolling and scrubbing, rose ever-budding.