Saturday, 22 August 2009


The sky washedhands water grey,
Guarding against the Summer,
Shares my mood as it skims
Over the gravelback driveway:
"You told me you had plans".

The boat sails the Lawn Sea,
Crosstrainer falls on slippered toes,
Old paint cans and carpets lie,
like ruins of the civilisation,
of the Otter Valley uplands.

For four weeks you have done nothing,
but sift yellowing papers
a maniacal clerk of black binliners
of statements, claims and reports,that no longer matter.

And now you stand here in the garage,
face blank as broken tiles,
and say with no hint of irony,
"You told me you had plans".
You selfish bloody man.

She may be gone by Christmas,
I tell myself she won't of course,
She has the life force and a World War,
behind her brown plastic glasses
But there is always the chance. Always.

"It's not a taxi service".
If only lightning would crack now,
and strike some selfless thought
into your Yorkshire dulled head
But the sky is grey, and so am I.

"Oh". What else is there to say?
Traverse the Lawn Sea,
back into the fort to solitude.
Ignore and be ignored.
Until I go back to my true home.

Thursday, 18 June 2009

When the money runs out, make more money...


Someday I am going to have a country. A small kingdom nestled into Alpine meadows where a young river, clear and sharp as cut glass, laughs like starlings as it clatters over the grey stones. They will speak Esperanto or Romansch or some other strange tongue that slides through lexicons like a canal barge, no need to pause, no time to punctuate. Through their hands passes money bearing portraits of people long since forgotten, in a shade of green that merely confirms their sickly deaths, their purgatory task being the guardians of currency. Flags wave languidly in the summer breeze as hay and honeysuckle stir the hanging folds of blue and silver cloth in a futile attempt to instil a little patriotism. A village, the capital, with cobbled streets and louvre shutters that are peeling scarlet paint at a rate of knots, is content to sleep in a peaceful equity of pomp and circumstance. Generals, colonels, lords and their ladies stroll the streets as though on clouds of superiority, moustaches waxed, hats burnished with feathers. Above them all the castle stands, a petrified sentry, tired and heavy in its old age, its service no longer necessary.


Hallowed Be Thy Name

He is the drunken, absent father
Who left us in our strange, wonderful infancy,
For unfathomable errands involving liquor and back-roads
And rusting rented cars
That travel the unending deserted miles of Heaven.

Every decision is erratic and blurred,
With calculated movement folding into staggering motions
Of unsure footing in a vodka half-dream

Through His thick clammy palms like two blunt tools
Passes greasy currency that used to buy happiness
Into the sequined underwear of nameless women
Who swing heavily bosomed bodies towards His listless face.

From day to day He passes through the ghost towns
Of a conscience long gone for humanity
And nights go by when He stares at the broken TV
Of the cheap motels of the human soul

And yet for all the sadness of this pitiful existence
There lies within Him thought and feeling
Of something other than gin-reeking fantasies
More than just a pipe dream of lust

On our birthdays’ it arrives amongst the mail
Small and crumpled in cheap blue paper
Filmed in the fatty remains of road side cafes
A scribbled note of intended happiness
Written by an unsure and rarely used hand

It is not what we wanted and smells of the damp
That plagues the haunts of that forgotten man
And yet we hold it to our chests so tight
And tears form in the corners of our eyes because

He remembered.

Rocket Ships

In the future that was often dreamt of in the past,
With chrome plated prophecies of a tomorrow that never was,
Atomic rocket ships, like fissison’s silver arrows,
Would glide seamlessly past the burning golden stars.

Their cargo would be colonists, travelling to imperial Mars
Or the frozen viscous wastes of pale blue Europa,
Anchored to the King of the Gods in His cosmic Olympus
Uncountable miles from Terra Firma.

And every evening back on Earth in laminated nylon aprons,
Their wives would gaze upwards from suburban porches,
Searching for that brightest star and wishing they had listened
When the General had explained the mission brief.

The husbands, bastioned in red plastic helmets,
Might shed the dry and silent tears that men sometimes do,
Carelessly smothered out of existence by Big-Bang static
When they know that far away the one they love worries for them.

But they must Go West, or whatever Cartesian folly it may be
To the Mobius twisted frontier of their present,
Where asteroids string celestial barbed wire fences over the light years,
And the final hitching post is the ancient grey luna surface,

The Moon cannot help but sympathise with those lonely pioneers,
As She stares downwards at her estranged blue companion,
And although those wanderers may talk as fast as Einstein will allow,
Their voices can only sound out to each other from a million miles away.

The Exam

To me you died how you lived,
In lines and dots and black curlicues,
Which irrigate that crisp biege desert,
With stories of your achievements,
And of your failings.

And as you stare with copper eyes,
At the meeting of the rivers in Koblenz
Do you pine for your cruises
Along the wide green fjords,
Of the Mitteleuropa you dreamed of?

It seems shameful really,
That Weltpolitik should rest here,
Twenty pfennigs adorn its cold eyes,
As it runs in winding rivers from my pen,
In lines and dots and black curlicues.

Friday, 5 June 2009

The Canterbury Metro
It will be real one day...