Archive for the ‘Tales of the Comeback Kid’ Category


Running in my sleep

Today I woke and heard the rain
Whispering to me on the window pain
‘Get up and run’ it is a constant tug
A deep yearning for that post run buzz

Then a familiar ache reminds me
I still have to tame and heal this crippled leg
Exercises looping on repeat,
Strengthen rest, strengthen rest,

For all my work I cannot ever be complete
But maybe I can be just enough
All I need is a path that’s clear
A lot of healing and a little luck

© 2015 Peter Anstiss


The lost boy

I find myself fearing that one more abyss
One more false step
Just might bring about the end of all this
It’s not that I am lacking in courage
I have clawed my way back before
And will do so again, if I can
But I am no longer armoured
With the boundless strength and youth
It is not always about me
It’s not even about the truth
There are other factors to consider
Other chaos that I can’t control
It seeps into my life
Casting long shadows,
Diminishing the light
Until everything is as black as them
Is that how it ends for me?
Despite all my planning
Despite all my mechanisms for coping
I will just lose myself in a bunch of nothing

I refuse to be lost

© 2015 Peter Anstiss


The sun beyond the storm

Beyond those skeleton days
Beyond the slashed feelings and pumping blood
Broken hearts mend, wounds heal,
And eventually scars form and fade

(I am a man of scars)

One foot in front of the other
You can discover
Shattered bones knit
The long game players don’t quit

(I have lived through a lot of broken bones)

And the storms may rage, and trees may fall
A home that’s broken is no home at all
On the morning tide something good might just wash up
Beyond the pain the sun will always come up

(I belong to the sun and the sea, but never that broken home)

© 2015 Peter Anstiss

Just a short scatter of abstract thoughts and a photo from a long walk during a roller coaster week.


The King of the Liars

Rain crashed against the window pane
But it didn’t really matter
He was wrapped in the safety
Of coffee shop warmth
Amongst favourite smells
Safe from sleepless hell’s
Just reading the kiss and tells
Scribbling down the ideas
That the fresh inked pages seed

He had once called himself
The king of the liars
And was reminded of the fact
Whilst he stirred his coffee
And the singer sang
‘To a writer the truth is no big deal’*
Truth of course has its absolutes
But most truths are hidden in the grey
Shrouded in the things we never say

Nobody had wanted his truth, not even him
Even if he had spoken it when it had really mattered
No one was listening
It was a silent death
In a small wood, next to a ploughed field
Amongst the dead leaves, in the dank dark
On a cold, damp, autumn day
And everything he had been since then
Well, that had been, an invention, a lie

He had reinvented himself a dozen times
Committed a number of crimes
It was how he managed to survive
As he struggled to find his worth
A worth he finally found in her
Her safe arms, her deep love
Her innocent and happy care free ways
But insecurity and his soulless truth
Made her hard to keep

She was not to know
He will always be
The boy that never sleeps
The boy with shields of lies
The man that rarely cries
And though he had once died
He was still just a youth
And if you are a lie
How do you know the truth?

He couldn’t help
But be the man that never was
Some things are just because.
Some one, or some thing, makes us a lie,
Causes us to die
But of course even for him
‘Life goes on’*
It was just not the one
He was born to live

© 2015 Peter Anstiss

*L.I.F.E.G.O.E.S.O.N. – Noah and the Whale

It seems apt that I should publish this in the week that one of my favourite bands announced that they are no more. ‘The King Of The Liars’ has been kicking about in my mind in one way or another for over a year. A poem/song that is in the past, future and present in the time it takes to drink a cup of coffee. Yet, though the idea was good and the raw emotions were there bubbling below the surface as they always are, it was the words of someone else that hit a chord and tied it all together. L.I.F.E.G.O.E.S.O.N.


Smoke and Mirrors


Today I’ll wake to daily pain

But I no longer let it own me

I found a way to keep me sane

To somehow keep my smile


Carefully under lock and key I keep

These scars and ruined bones

My skeleton in my cupboard stays

At least for now, anyway


It is just smoke and mirrors that I use

Illusions of the mind to pull me through

A trick I learnt from you

The only good to emerge from the evil you do


So I take my screams and place them in

An unused biscuit tin

A callous twist of fate might set them free

But that, is the uncertain happiness of being me


© 2013 by Peter Anstiss




Spite and lies upon his lips
Words and blood from his mouth spits
I was a puppet at his finger tips
I was just a kid

I took his sin, he took my hits
If anyone deserves this, he did
But still it’s me left broken inside
Even at the turning of the tide

Manipulation was his game
He knew how to work my shame
Which way to twist the knife
He knew how to shatter a life

In revenge there was no glory
Just another chapter in my sordid story
Once I swallowed every lie
And became the boy dead inside

The final twist was the worst of all
Truth from lies, I can’t tell at all
The doctor says, it can’t be true
The needles leave me black and blue

Yet the baron girl she haunts me still
I guess she always will
Some thing’s can’t be undone
Even when a victories won

© 2013 by Peter Anstiss



I walk the streets by day
To strengthen my broken body
I pace my room at night
To try to think myself right

Once in a while
I get trapped in the past
Stalked by childhood demons
They hold me in their grasp

I am a ghost in the day time
A shadow at night
I want shine for you
But you turn from my sight

Fuelled with coffee and red wine
My flag is unfurled
What would become of me?
Without your love sweet girl

This dialect and imagery
Reminds me of you and I
They fit together so well you see
But they don’t always rhyme

I am a ghost in the day time
A shadow in the night
I want to shine for you
But you turn from my sight

My insecurity
Can wash me out to sea
Strong hands that silence me
Passers-by that never see

Mothers that never hear
Fathers that never ask
Children that never say
Just dread another day

I am a ghost in the day time
A shadow in the night
I want to shine for you
But you turn from my sight

I am a ghost in the day time
A shadow in the night
But all this would fade away
If you just hold me tight

© 2013 by Peter Anstiss

Written as a lyric, ‘Ghost’ is part of the Comeback Kid collection. As a song or a poem I am pleased with the emotion it captures. It is about past and present pain. What happens when those two things collide? It hints at the importance of having a coping mechanism to handle emotional crisis.

Even the strongest people have breaking points, such as painful memories and physical trauma. These can leave skeletons in our lives that have a horrible habit of tumbling from whence we have stuffed them at the most inconvenient time. Sometimes you don’t even know where the emotion comes from. Sometimes you do, but still can’t face it. That’s when you become a ghost! When I’m a ghost I walk, I run, I pace and when I am feeling brave, I confront.

I know you

I know you

You lived down my street

You went to my school

You were young and almost pretty

Now you’re a girl with hollow eyes

And ravaged skin you laugh

But it sounds like a lie

Alive but no one left within

We kissed once under a willow

But it was nothing much

We barely touched

You were all smiles and no sorrow

Bad things happened

In that place where we lived

Your parents should’ve worried about other things

Not that innocent kiss

Did what happened to me?

Happen to you!

They made me a ghost too

But I came back, so could you

I look into your eyes

And know that’s not true

I knew you

But you’re gone

Love and hate: Lesson one

I am always afraid
Since he hunted me down
Stripped me of my innocence
Robbed me of my pride
I want to grow beyond that
But I can’t escape his shadow
It is a wound that won’t heal
That’s why I am here

You really want to do this?
I nod,
Very well he says…
I see his doubt but…
I need this strength
I need this purpose
I have been afraid so long
I will die, if I can’t shake myself free

He wrote the letters on each finger
You will love your left hand
Your jab will keep your opponent at bay
Love, will protect you when others try to make hay
Love with your left
It will pave the way for hate

He wrote the letters on each finger
Everybody must fear your hate
Whenever you throw hate
It must hurt
Hate must carry the weight
Of all your fury
It will reap pain and fear
It will buckle knees and brake bones
It will split skin and swell flesh
I have plenty of hate
I have hate to spare
So much hate it scares me

Do you think you can do that?
I nod mutely,
I know I can,
Love, love, love, hate, love, hate!
The mantra has begun
The fights will flow
I have love, I have hate, I will devastate.

Flesh and bone they fall before me
No one is less afraid
They all want to live more than I do
That’s why they lose
My hate, my fear, my shame
Washed Clean

© 2013 by Peter Anstiss

Tales of the Comeback Kid’s will be a collection of poems charting survival. A journey from dark childhood tinged with sadness to great triumphs. How we survive adversity is what really defines us. Fate shakes his dice and we have to cope with the numbers good or bad. We are all comeback kids, but some of us have further to climb than others

I don’t have a release date for this collection, but I will be posting some excerpts over the next few months.