13 places you should not visit

1. The Plastic Palace.

2. Papadad’s cafe.

3. The Inverted Mountain.

4. Feather Street.

5. The Bird King’s orchard.

6. The Ministry of Teeth.

7. Your basement.

8. Mr Punch’s Puppet Emporium.

9. The petrified forest.

10. The crossroads over the hill.

11. The Empty Lake.

12. Rosethorn Cottage.

13. The derelict laboratory.


All texts on this site are the copyright of James Knight. All rights reserved.


The mechanical muses








All of these images were created using an iPad, Photoshop Touch and a mixture of public domain photos and pictures taken with my phone. All rights reserved.

13 cyborg poets

1. Lost in the Vision Matrix, J0hn Clare transmitted a distress signal designed to be audible only to himself.

2. T S El10t ran on a complex algorithm that produced seemingly fragmentary results. However, if you run Imagewise an underlying order appears.

3. C0ler1dge suffered a non-integration glitch. His Narco Neurons were in permanent conflict with routines instigated by a Homily implant.

4. Walt Wh1tman’s predilection for free verse was the consequence of a series of malfunctions in his Metrical Regulator.

5. The deadly Anne 5ext0n devoured boys, cars and prayers, blades whirring, shutter eyes snapping. Afterwards, sated, she cat-napped in a coffin.

6. When the archaeologists finally extricated the monolith from the embrace of the petrified forest, they found Tenny50n embedded in it.

7. Spinning a web of words, J0hn D0nne’s Sp1der Appendage resembled an eight-fingered hand. In its nimble frenzy it misspelled “dove” as “love”.

8. Lew15 Carr0ll processed language through a series of Whimsy Filters, generating reams of dream words, realms and dream worlds.

9. W1ll1am Blake wrote Songs of Innocence after his Logic Node was shut down. Following a S1N upgrade, the Songs of Experience howled from him.

10. W0rsdsw0rth’s operating system crashed every time he looked at a lake, mountain or gorge. The problem was caused by oversensitive Sublimity Receptors.

11. Alexander P0pe’s Syllepsis Module strained his vegetables and his relations with other poets.

12. Sylv1a Plath smashed her way out of the iron foundry, Thanatos mode engaged. Later, she made the word “BABY” from scrap metal.

13. Hibernating in her Death Pod, Em1ly D1ck1n50n still emits little noises that some commentators claim are philosophical questions.


This piece was originally published as a series of tweets. It is dedicated to Christina Scholz, whose idea it was that they should be assembled into a 13. All texts on this site are the copyright of James Knight. All rights reserved.

Improvised piece, masquerading as a poem

Writing without purpose without sense without a sentence in mind
Letting the words take me
Romantic notion!
Words don’t take me, don’t transform,
Don’t ennoble or perform alchemy in the night
I reserve the right to contradict myself
And don’t like the look of that cloud
Shaped like an ostrich
Reaching for me with wispy neck
Slippery as eels
Lippy as seals
Without purpose without sense
Quite happy
If sometimes anxious that the great granite legacy
Of Blake Whitman Ginsberg Césaire Paz
Diminishes my nightmarish miniatures
Not that I’m seeking gruff greatness
Just a readership
A dealership of rust cars on blasted borders
Impossible to describe to tell to trace to face it outrace it
With my face my composite face disgraced by things fluttering
In blank margins
Blank as a gun
Blank as love
Blank as the spaces the white spaces in hospital corridors
Between green and grim grins
Endless as nothing
Futile as abstractions
Ending unending easy paradox
Without purpose
Without me


All texts on this site are the copyright of James Knight and even in my haste and waste I type copyright notices how pointless

I was wired up

I was wired up all wrong
So the circuits don’t work
As you’d expect
I was wired up all wrong
Wired up fired up tied up fried pup
Yapping at heels of invisible monsters
Lapping the sore shores
With the Bird King’s black tongue
Black fun with black clouds
Thunderous applause sometimes
From a cloud of iron filings
And my head my sorry head
Jaw all skewed
Beady birdy eyes
Rolling like a boulder like a snowball
Hardening beneath determined gloved hands
Rolling like empty waves
Smashing glass on black sand
Shattering the sky’s mirror
Where the leering bleary faces
Of my identikit grotesques
Line up roll up roll up come see roll up roll up
Monolithic mad megalomaniacal murderous mummies’ boys
Such as I am
Dispersed diluted drowned forgotten
In these waters
I was wired up very badly and madly
And sadly old Papadad doesn’t know me
I was wired
I was wired up
I was wired
What was I saying
I was wired up and my muscles turned to stone
From looking too longingly at Medusa and Judy and Eve
From looking too lovingly at phantoms
Vitals ossifying
Mind petrifying
A minefield where bodies fly apart and stay suspended in air
Thick with Mr Punch’s secret dread

Dusk is the pleasantest time of day


All texts and images on this site are the copyright of James Knight. All rights reserved.

13 confessions made by the Punchman, after being subjected to enhanced interrogation techniques

1. It was never me operating Jack Ketch. I let someone else do it. Never saw his face. He smelt of burning oil.

2. I stole from the kids’ parents. While they watched the show, I sent my mates round to pick their pockets.

3. I gave the arresting officers nightmares. It was easy. Once they’d looked me in the eye I had them.

4. I made Punch commit his crimes.

5. On the night of the fire I hid behind the burger van and got wasted.

6. I started the fire. I started all the fires. I’m an anarchist Prometheus.

7. I am the Bird King.

8. My nanobots took down Big Ben.

9. I called myself Insom and issued mp3 tracks that put listeners into comas.

10. I wrote poems that eroded reality.

11. The Plague of Moths was my idea.

12. I force-fed Mr Punch an uncooked black pudding.

13. I hijacked the ONEIROSCOPE and turned dreams against the dreamers.


This 13 is a previously unpublished footnote to Mr Punch Dreams.

All texts on this site are the copyright of James Knight. All rights reserved.