Upgrade to Everything

Angela Gardner


Between housework and billable hours your endless needs.

Safelight or brothel? The pinball flipper bounce between

generates a static of fatigue. I’m in my legwarmers and cowgirl

tutu, wrapped for the night in crackly plastic for a low-cut

drive to a city. In sticky heat we dance the side-pony to yester

year’s velour: sheer-wrap of contact, crush-anthem of serotonin,

dopamine, noradrenaline. Love and angst as it presses close.

You can be a boy princess, and I’ll be a vampire, or I’ll be

a whatever-its-name and you’ll be my servant. The automata

of the world overridden by friction, the fiction of externality,

by funny guys and naturals: in car insurance or anaesthetic.

They dance out of earshot in rain so heavy it drowns out

the Mexican themed inflatable cactus, the chilli tinsel hangers

and the gaudy Day of the Dead lanterns. It’s in one door, out

the other. In one other, out the door. Out of everything,

as music blares so loud the fish float dead on the surface of it.



Angela Gardner’s most recent books are The Told World Shearsman UK; Thing & Unthing Vagabond, both 2014; and with Caren Florance, The future, unimagine (2017) Recent Work Press. Her eighth book, Some Sketchy Notes on Matter, shortlisted for the Dorothy Hewett Award 2018, is forthcoming from Recent Works Press, in 2019.

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