I am alone.
The air presses down heavy on my back.
Different bed,
I’m more used to this than my own now.
Home feels strange
but nothing feels home like my head on your chest.

We are all alone
but I am incapable
of setting aside my
constant “connection”.

I am so within myself
and without, looking in
I can never see through your eyes
and I never looked.

we are fundamentally connected
but functionally alone.

I am alone.

inky little heart

If I could live two lifetimes
one of them would be forever yours,
I would be covered in tattoos
and lay with you always as we do now
reflecting art upon each other

and you could kiss me in the perfect way you do
every day for always
if I could live two lives
split myself asunder
I would give one of me to you

If I could live two lifetimes,
one of them would see me covered
always in your perfect words,
within your heart that meets me
as I have never before been met

all the perfect things between us
could float unchanged as we age
and I know they will, and yet
there are other parts of me now
changing faster, every day

if I could be two people,
your girl would never leave your side
I could bask forever in your beautiful smile
ask your skin to please, never
stop touching mine

no one before
has seen me as you do,
given me confidence in permanence
the courage to ink my skin
and desire a forever
if my future was sealed,
as I almost thought it was
I could put aside my uneasy heart
and rest comfortable
in the arms of your promise

if I could belong to you
as well as to myself
but I cannot
and I do not

…and yet I do

each further step I take
leads a stinging river of dark
along the paths your love left
deeper into my chest

and my inky little heart
is, for you, forever marked.

the climb

This is not a happy ending.
We will continue to climb
invisible mountains,
alongside those who walk
on flat ground and wonder
why we sweat.

I hear there is no peak;
no height of relief to reach
no end point
no attainment
but a lifetime marriage
to the climb.

and sometimes we will feel
so tired; see the road
stretch far ahead and wonder
if we can continue…

but we will

and I know your eyes
are heavy, I know
the leaden feet, the raw lungs
I know

but my darling,
when we weather this work
feel how much stronger we are
for the daily slog we do

and when the clouds clear
we can see
this view.

November ’14


I am in salt air
feet dangling
midday heat singing through the bush.
lover is in my bed,
across the river
sleeping his heavy head through the day.

How you have taken up
residence here.
how my bones speak of you
and blood whispers –
I take 3 steps away
and my nerves stretch.
“go,” they say,
“we need to go”
but all the while
they root in your hands
and tie gentle knots around my wrists.


Let your fingers taste my mouth.
maybe I am honey-sweet,
or maybe I bite
like chilli in a chocolate cake.
Let me let you love me
kiss each knuckle on my hand
(it carries more punch
to feel it more than hear it – )
to say that you will fight
alongside or ringside
when I am too tired to swing,
you will carry me gently to bed
and kiss me into softness.
remind me there is another day
to float, and stinging
only drains us anyway.
Love me into singing silence.
Shush my furrows and my brow-knits
that crinkle down my nose and jump,
into my voice.
You are my deepest breath.
I will hold you in my mouth one moment longer
and kiss you, beautiful,
tasting you tasting me.

July ’14


a beautiful silence
resting on your heart
in deafening rain.
curling steam, wet feet
one then two
feeling each tile beneath the towel

you are electrically aware,
a kinaesthetic lightning-rod.

who were you before this touch?
before this vibrant wakefulness
this fervent sensitivity
how could you say, “awake”
and mean anything
prior to this?

beating, pulsing, resonance
nothing compares
to this brightness
this feeling
is infinite

August 2014

somewhere in the city

Buildings stretch before me
like endless waves of lives.
It’s not your car,
it’s what it represents;
and how I love the one
cycling by at ten to midnight
underneath the plane,
spinning parallel along
the fault lines of the city.

The buildings almost sink into the ground.
It’s not the bricks and concrete,
it’s what they represent;
a living graveyard,
the tombs in which
we keep the breathing.

We are all just waiting.
My lungs live
to rise and fall,
along the gentle tides of my energy
strong, then strong, then weak again.

This time of the month once more,
but for the first time I am letting go.
This place again,
but this time
my lips would tell you no.

my hand unfurls.

You are somewhere in this city,
alone and dark
not thinking of me.
Your jaw clenches in your sleep.
It’s not your tension,
it’s what it represents;
I would have robbed you of your pain,
if I could.  if you’d let me.
Gripped it tight, palm alight,
jagged sharp and burning bright.

I would not have found my own way
following your downward trail.
I need both eyes upturned,
both arms to clear my path.
And you would have stumbled,
without your burning pain
to light the dark.

My hand may be scarred where
you burnt my loving skin,
but it’s not the grip that matters –
but how far we turn within.

May ’14


I hope you enjoy reading my poetry and prose. This blog is in chronological order from most recent to oldest.

I recommend my Best Of list, which contains the pieces which are, in my opinion, the best I've written. But please! Take your time and have a browse. Constructive critique is actively encouraged!

I am usually singing words as well as writing them. You can find my music at any of the below Tilley links. Enjoy <3

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All content on this blog © Rebecca Tilley, 2003-present


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