HCE received a lot of high-quality submissions for The Brutal Issue – sadly, too many to fit inside the magazine! So we offered some of our shortlisted contributors the chance to be published on our website.

Keep an eye on our social media for more great writing like this, in the run up to the release of The Brutal Issue…

I Drink Therefore I Harm

Neil Laurenson

I could murder a cup of tea.
I could annihilate a coffee.
I could totally evaporate
Some water
By boiling it
To death.


I could lay into a gin.
I could instil fear in a beer.
I could show a piña colada who’s harder.


I could make a glass of red
I could make a glass of milk
I could make a cup of hurt chocolate.


I could express serious ill feeling
Towards a cup of Darjeeling.
I could cause a cup of Earl Grey
Monumental dismay.
I could do an enormous amount of wrong
To a cup of Lapsang souchong.


NEIL LAURENSON was born in Shetland and has lived in Worcester for the past 10 years. He has read at many poetry events, including the Ledbury Poetry Festival and Cheltenham Poetry Festival. His debut pamphlet Exclamation Marx! was published by Silhouette Press last year. Neil used to dress up as Tony Blair and assumed that people would interpret this habit as a protest rather than a tribute. He has since become a parent and a councillor and has resisted the urge to wear a latex mask to make a point. His children are grateful for this.
Website: http://www.neillaurenson.com
Neil’s poetry collection ‘Exclamation Marx!’ can be purchased here: http://silhouettepress.co.uk/shop/exclamation-marx-by-neil-laurenson/