Darrel Perkins + Samuel Newborn

Giant Squid Have Few Dirty Secrets

Squid Love. Linoleum Relief PrintTrio of Hearts. Linoleum Relief PrintLove Inks. Linoleum Relief Print

A giant squid’s mantle may tighten around a trio of hearts,
but it wears it genitals on its sleeve.
This seems almost ordinary,
for a ten limbed sub-aquatic snail.
That it’s not into intimacy,
could be deduced from its double shredding beak:
cutters not kissers.

That its head cracks to a yolk of ink
can be seen through its seven-inch single eyes,
too vinyl dark just to be lightless holes.
Its body flutes, like a doctor’s coat,
to instruments medically precise;
but the giant squid does not anesthetise.
It has no hypodermic stinger, no venom,
it eats its prey alive, brazen, unashamed,
out in wide open water.


Writer: Sam Newborn
Illustrator: Darrel Perkins

Thug Life

Thug Life. Linoleum Relief Print

You would never guess, you’d think it a joke,
if I told you this was my first ever smoke,
that later my ring came off, lubed with sweat,
as I groaned into the toilet, puked and retched.
You would never guess that behind the fumes,
I’m in a cream-ivory sitting room.

Though the scrape of my cap may say ‘thug life’
by the time I’m thirty I’d like a wife,
a coffin shaped mid-priced family saloon,
a WELCOME welcome mat, kid on the way,
a sun-filled kitchen, a kingdom of lawn,
fair-trade footwear and a mortgage to pay:

I’ll take out that stud – the ear-skin will heal,
as the smoke screen clears, my face becomes real.


Writer: Sam Newborn
Illustrator: Darrel Perkins