Hors Système

In any age

a writer may say

“It’s gone too far

we have lost our way.”

Though it was always true

it’s ne’er been truer

than today.


We swap friendship for facebook?

We trade love for tinder?

What have we become?

Have we come undone?


We are numb.

Numb to the suffering

and the pain

‘cos on the news

day in

day out

it’s the same.


We are blind.

Blind to the wasted minutes

and hours

that erode

our time

that erode

our life.


We are liars.

Liars, we feign acceptance

and equality

when really

we’re still steeped

in violence

and poverty.


We are alone.

Alone and isolated

we pray

a device will give us value

but it’s too late

you’re no longer you.


Well, as a writer of today

let me say

we’ve gone too far.

we have lost our way.

© K.N.Liddington


*Writer’s notes:

This piece is a social commentary reacting to our desensitization, isolation and misinformation. All such pieces are written with a view to expressing dissatisfaction with the faults of our society and encouraging readers to question our routines, our truths for the hope of a better future. The title is French ‘hors’ meaning in this instance apart from or separate from the system.


My Friend Tyler

I had a friend called Tyler

Tyler liked to rewrite the sky

Tyler liked to live, fight and die.


My friend Tyler made sense

down with fathers and God

burn the ground they trod.


Tyler knew how to break rules

fight, bleed to beat the system

pillage it and make them listen.


My first fight was with Tyler

I hit him too hard in the ear

he swung back with a sneer.


I met Tyler in a dream of nothing

despairing a routine existence

Tyler became my resistance.


Tyler made purpose simple

challenge every moment

or die without atonement.

© K.N.Liddington


*Writer’s notes:

This piece was inspired by Chuck Palahniuk’s book ‘Fight Club’ and the film adaptation of the same name directed by David Fincher. Part of a project to write a series on influential films and literature.

The Mercenary

There once was a man known as no- name

who’d fled home to pursue ill-gotten gains.

A soldier of fortune he became, to sow

bullets and bloodshed for his every foe.


He’d string them up and bleed them out,

Acting unburdened by conscience or doubt.

What drives a man to forsake his name?

To kill others?  For greed, or for shame?


Once  –  he’d had a family

Once  –  he’d known mercy.


Now, behind smoke-filled eyes…

He contemplates his own demise.

Free from fear and driven by rage

This man would never die in a cage.


He’s a lone wolf,

a gun for hire,

A wicked man,

rough-wrought in fire.

© K.N.Liddington


I’d rather be sat here amidst these smiling, stranger-faces,

Than back at home weeping over my long-lost graces.


Though I may be alone yet surrounded by the many,

I find comfort in the sound of them making merry.


The cavern in my stomach is muffled by their chatter,

Seemingly, my pain, here, doesn’t really matter.


I can bask in the glow of their happy exchanges,

And hope and wish that my own circumstance changes.


© K.N.Liddington

The Man Of Misogyny

She was treading air,

a wide-eyed tourist of the world,

outlook positive and forecast fair.

She was a country girl.


He rode the wave of ego

setting a course for selfish stars

hanging on to entitlement, though

he was the baddest boy by far.


They met and he deftly crept

into her moonshine eyes,

in to her sapling heart and yet

he sought to rewrite the ledger with lies.


Mother was a harsh taskmaster.

The man of misogyny.

took his roots in disaster

from a young age, you see.


Her daddy had always been tough.

That’s how it’s supposed to be,

conditional love is love enough.

She wouldn’t know different, would she?


At first, it was living the lie:

the man of honour,

the man of light,

She was aglow. Her face a happy sigh.


Then came the slow unveilings:

he liked to shout and smash,

he liked to break things,

she would shiver at each crash.


Then there was that other one,

the twilight-night-time secret.

But that was back then and now she’s gone,

Besides she’d pushed him to it.


The man of selfish blindness.

Wanting to make her in his broken image

then wielding hurt and unkindness

to save being alone in misery’s cage.


The man of dark desires.

He liked to get in and break you down,

get in and start wildfires,

grinning under his Master’s crown.


She was still soft to the touch,

Still in too deep and hopeful

it would get better, it wouldn’t take much

for him to respect her and be faithful.


The man of misogyny.

He disregards communication,

she shuts up from fear of calamity.

He stews with resentful determination.


She grows cold, grows silent.

Tries harder, drinks harder.

In her liver, the toxic serpent

twists and takes her mind farther.


The man of mystery.

One night he doesn’t come home,

4 am she finally falls asleep.

He didn’t even phone.


The man of misogyny.

Ignores her requests

to check for a gas leak,

He said it’s all in her head.


The man of misogyny.

Would you know?

Well, he gets hungry

and she always cooks up a show.


What disastrous irony

that she died at the stove

of the man of misogyny.


He saw the debris,



and off he drove.

© K.N.Liddington


Whitewashed in blue

The room,

the room,

suddenly –

whitewashed in blue.

This… this came too soon!

But – I will,

I will,

return to you.


Whitewashed in blue

and still, I think of you,

feelings like walls stripped

and whitewashed in blue.

But – I will,

I will,

return to you.


The light floods my eyes

whitewashed in blue,

oh, so tender memories of you.

But – will I,

will I,

be returned to you?


                                             © K.N.Liddington