Friday, December 26, 2008

This just IS the best version.

aesop's fox breaks loose

it is in its ungoverned incessant picking and unpicking and working and that it resembles a small child and that even when the batteries have expired and will continue to tug at a thing and tease threads from it and until its eyes spill out and it is finally broken and expired and whirring itself down foolishly and on the Christmas carpet and/or if it was a live thing perhaps until it finally turned from so much persistent agitation and showed its teeth and so wearisome had the worrying become and that was only anyway inspired by this attitude of careless and though fervent working away and to some unreachable and irrelevant end and anyway now purely because it knows no other settlement and/or closure and simply cannot rest without further mischief caused that it might at least stir again inside itself and from this least and most spurious of all stimulations
.
.

4mm float

there was a voyeuristic humour in it that stretched like 1875 ectoplasm through the transatlantic wainscots and almost made him jump though it was certain that it in its gathering impulse
knew it not nor how it span it being the closest it had recently been to sexual delight such that all else was subsumed there in that earnestness and that scenting of conflicted pheromone hunger
.
.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

The people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.

—Nazi Reich Marshall Hermann Goerring.
.
.

Richie Havens—Freedom (Woodstock)

Jack's turtle (with errors)

What is that Kerouac haiku about a turtle floating on a log? Something like this, though I don't remember it perfectly:

turtle floating downstream
on a log—
looking up

I think this captures Kerouac's essence of the little satori of haiku. In those two words 'looking up' at the end the scene suddenly opens up and we get this glimpse of the serious wild heart of a turtle, its earnestness, our projected anthropomorphic pride and strength, its survival, its pragmatism and realism, its serious up-arching of the neck 'wondering' WTF is going on with this new transport...

It's comical in the sense that all creatures are comical in their necessary self-seriousness, and it conveys both the comedy and the quite wonderful tenderness of this scene with utter concision and brilliance. I am in that moment suddenly, and my heart pours out to it just because of the sheer innocence he conveys. And this is the thing... if you can focus the energy of words like that in haiku, then you create a little nexus through which people can drift into other realities. I am there floating and laughing and crying in turtle world, and somehow knowing something I didn't quite know before. It's worth a lot of struggle, this haiku stuff, just to hit one moment like that.

Apologies if I misremembered it. It was something pretty close.

Edit: Oh, now I just looked it up... It's actually this:

A turtle sailing along
on a log,
Head up

So I remembered it pretty badly, but in fact it makes the point far better in the original version than in my half-assed remembrance. Interesting use of punctuation and capitals there too, to solve some obvious haiku issues about pacing and spacing.

Anyway, I still think that that tiny line, 'Head up', in context, is one of the most moving and memorable and profound lines I've ever read in haiku, or maybe any other poetry for that matter. Haiku is like Sinatra's New York, I think. If you can make it here, you can make it anywhere... Most of us can't make it. It's the three line pressure cooker.


.
.
I made hen noises
in the grandparents' henhouse—
the hens stopped dead
.
.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

who now understands
the quiet of cluttered rooms—
how the heart listens
.
.

Number 2 by Xmas will do for me...

the snowman's nose
was a sweet potato—
sheep got it
.
.
sycamores grey
against confused sky—
warm damp winter
.
.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Vegas nerve

lacking the early association of horses & death—Madeleine Shine

.............—even without headlamps & swerves
.................. sweeping rowan silhouettes/vistas of pure light

[the way home already known to involve
a traversing of many weeps and freshets] but but

...............zen/y/atta mond/atta—
..................look such waifs of the nostratic

but no he cried there so silly in firelight but no
—as though such admonishment might alter my feeling
for his sister and her collection

of strange dolls she spun into talking every hourless window
where in the attic her mother died slow
....................................................(oh still channelling throughout
....................................................her many pets would later claim)

slow as peaches rotting
down there in old desert cans

from the Crimea and the wastes I have for you such news such news


"Vegas?"—we even ask him that—"Vegas?"
.............how kindly he gaze in his crepuscules there

(they talk now all is
of psychism and drugs
—outside/the moon
at some perigee
& no longer even
purpose between us)

..............here at the flitting hour
..............where with such eyes/
..............he jumps forever in
..............the chests of the deceased

—I doubt all the perigee of it now

"Vagus" he says—"something different..."

["they persuaded me back
started me like an engine"
]

(these are red tiles that lead nowhere)

grey wings enfold
no no no
wings enfold................no are no wings................enfolding no enfold

facedown//harking//black mucus
something grey
...................... enfolds
.............. something/nothing

—I doubt all the tenderness of it now
,
,
,

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

this winter rite unflarfed

resolution: fifteen days from now an animal
will occur in your slow rollers & breakers

over and in and because of your misunderstood
will commence discriminately to devour

unpleasantness, pain of delivery, the sleek

[all this could be still changed
by a few firefox add-ons
some modules of latent proxy]

tigers nowhere now just the wholehearted of exo-skeleta
lost at dusk in the woods so complex

we have no longer time for anything

[those americans reviling the french
calling them those names]

when it really came out it was as lungs
not cartoon organs but actual and present
all purple and wet so like newborns///

now sex because of the nervous assault
seeming tantamount to some event

is only in fact a routine inflammation
fading quickly given the reach

of politics and bullying issues as still

an eventual monster continues to advance
with name labels at its little neck that we

find like ourselves in the wet morning
soon still able to love

.............................................the third waiting is soon over

foliage and of some creeping
continues to advance

now we see unclearly such an essence

that these are the most lightened
of days when the boy even in his caper

soon knows in his own flood and flux
that through the lens of a poem

is he unknown
he continues to advance
.
.

gorilla loose on highstreet

the body has gone underground due to widespread persecution - Madeleine Shine

in those times of the interior
of antimony
of ambergris
of kohl

of Zanzibar & Shendy
dig my grave I will dig yours such—in wet vellum we go stark laughing

it was reported ............huge grinning black men
...................covered in fur

........................rush/from behind trees
......................clutch/white*ladies/to them
................in fevers/of amorous shivering

..............Freud bitten himself to death oh fearful greek katyusha

.....................................................
on a cigar of all nations

...................Reich askance the whole winter's edge fluting
............................................in orgone boxes invisible cancers

Jung suddenly addressed with fondness his stockpot in the tower
..........................and was unconscionably requited

(my half-brother now the fucking summertime duke fuck off
...........................into your...............walled garden!)

this ape thing and not universally acknowledged as myth

keep keep it for your aghast moments

.
.
.
.
(
Published in The Cleave January 2009)

.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

the daily mash and mr ratzinger

I love edgy stand-up

the fish give themselves one night a year

in some oblique similarity to Jules Verne
who stowed always a rope in case of fire
I assess women as potential partners
by how they might operate
adrift on an open boat

at night on the South Atlantic—
would they make pies
from triggerfish eyes
would they fill swim bladders
with broth made of dorados
hang them on such albatross air

as was then available
to sparkle about us as
Christmas approached &
would they administer
fish-oil enemas
to our clogged children

(the high protein
diet with little roughage is known to afflict
firstly the young) unluffing
the sail

with the other hand &
talking of William Bligh
of Poon Lim of secrets
of navigation

by the long atlantic swells
would they commit acts
of random sex during
our tossing sleep
at such a time
at such a time

in all things would they give themselves unstinting
to this new narrow life?

I think Alain Bombard
may now be the only girl for me
.
.

Alfie

your pain—
my knowing that I
can't help you
.

Monday, December 15, 2008

this winterval upscorch

Oh that is great I feel like a student writer sometimes—The Weaver

O that is now great i feel like
a student writer sometimes who
took hisself to the well the well and became
all of elephants so right so there
in such the updraught
that shook with stars
that wailed and shone
heaved hisself up and jumped
all for the searching the quest O
for that and for the wishful shuck of it
so he jumped and the jumping
was found to be good
and the falling was itself
a thing to be discerned and disregarded
the falling O the falling
abandoned of fetish and frailty
through moss and masonry
years had grown there
in the s[plashing]
the shadow
had grown
it reached it reaches it reacheth
out upon him over him at him grasping
though he unfolds like thighs like wings
burnished as all bewilder
he wrests again from it
these secrets of light
he thrusts he thrusts
down upon him rain stars
as into other worlds he flies
Sindbad and Husheng and Ahriman
Ahura Mazda god of lightbulbs
eat up with alacrity the bean soup
the fields of gold
spread before them
but his name is not that not that
only in his wanting
he flies now over waving emmer fields
over fertility and mooning fastnesses
marvels swirling at his tail
look only this he says coming
in the dust at her feet so laced so henna
I have seen all I will not tell of it
but will now breed sleek horses
for a career that I happen
and you will shine with me
O woman of shaking forest mist
I will clutch at you with my shine
my shake my shazam
like unto into we will shimmer loud ahence
for my name of names
forever now of wells and falling
so ended the period of his first great wanting
and lo a child was reared of the well
and its secrets were unguarded
and upon the land the curse
and the shining
and often she danced as a wild dog
and through the fogs and veils
and upon him
she laid herself to sleep
as a blue feather
.
.

all your openings

opening now to you
your new life your old

old life resprung
of waves and pulses

across warm wet
fields at night

of this of this
hurt of opening

we sing up disaster
opening still

eyes and pores
backlit with perception

of death the peeling back
of warm wet paper

from old walls
singing disaster

opening waveforms
into a woods

where you are open
peeling back as death

open as warm wet paper
lighted with perception

from old walls
waving with disaster

hurt of old wet walls
a lighted waveform

opening the waves
the pulses of fields

at night this open paper
pulling shapes of eyes

and pores new life in pulses
of waved walls collapsing lighted

as that kiss in waves and pulses
that tells all of collapses

of fields of waves
only this truth waving

of you wanting
what I want, like paper

to be here
in the same fields wanting

collapsing now
in light
.

.

Martha

three sheets to the wind

my parents are incontinent and known for it

everywhere they go or have-ever-been
are their leavings their extrusions

I don't get it
all this ordure everywhere

even at their own funerals
they'll be quietly sloughing

it into their boxes
we'll hear them in there

giggling about it
like it's still intoxicating, funny, joyous
after all this time

I'm sending them nappies
for Christmas
but I know they'll be sent back
......................full
.
.

casu marzu O seepage of unends

it wasn't lack of sensitivity or some inability
to surrender to the moment or to open wide

with some rushing of trains through sweeps
of open land in close Autumn it was just

that there was nothing in any of it to feel.

it was a sort of dead world it had created

in itself from which it glowered out upon
all of humanity with a look of machinery

that was running down towards collapse
that had somehow become aware of itself

that was displeased with the condition
that now wished pain upon others

in this way and others it had become
a rotten thing bringing violence

though those sponges and foliation
which had grown themselves to it




.
.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

who is the best ever screamer?

notes about the island woman

he comes on their fifteenth anniversary says look I have done calculations you have since our wedding consumed one large deep wide lake of beer a rushing tributary of wine all of it now cold urine flowing down noxiously poisoning the ocean and its exotic life.

I know this is true she says but I was compelled at all times by an urge to fill myself against the fluttering emptiness which afflicts me like the stirring of a large blue fowl in my gut.

in addition he says you have smoked an entire arid volcanic outcrop a small Galapagos running with strange lizards of cigarettes whose smoke even now blackens and clangs at the brass troposphere.

she says I know this also and again the urge to be filled to my farthest extremities was the cause of all that incontinent sucking.

I have made for you he says an island a floating land a Sargasso of paper smoked tobacco ash filter wadding it floats on a lake of cold alcohol-rich urine nothing will live on this island not even the strange lizards nothing will grow in this lake you will drift there always alone with ashen winds.

she stands with her hands above her eyes like the peak of a cap that shields her from the sun but there is no sun as he pushes off the little leather boat and sculls away from the island. she feels her skin harden her face stretch falls to all fours her brain shrinking back reptilian runs to the lake's edge watches him receding her tongue flicks tasting the air a hiss between her teeth.

the wind comes. the rain is cool on her skin. she lives. she lives.
.
.
.
(Published in Chimaera, May 2008)
a man threw his shoes
at George Bush in Baghdad—
George never threw shoes
.
.
age six my brother
lifted the lids off the hives—
they got him alright
.
.
his impulse
was to celebrate winter—
the room waited
.
.

the girdle sensation

in that her presence was itself
.......................some zonesthesia past mere atmospheric cinch
he breathed......tight.....shallow......would not look
................................................................would not feel

noticeably different yet for a week or more.......... the girdle sensation/the swoon

of her a hive or several or more hives or hives of hives... that hemmed
..........................upon him
..........................as poetic asphyxia

....................the cincture the drowning the press
.......................which in such ways......accompanies

....................an attempt to perform
some delicate and intricate task at the very limit
.........................of ability. like that

........................................he wanted to smash it.
.
.
.
(Published in The Cleave Jan 2009)

some antidote at least

Friday, December 12, 2008

owls yapping crazy
all night outside—
my glum reflection

stuff about haiku

Haiku started as something different, an opening (called a hokku) to a renga (a sequence of linked strophes with specific form). It's become a thing in itself, and it's become quite a misunderstood thing. The idea that haiku involves some 5/7/5 syllable count is based upon a misunderstanding. Haiku uses 5/7/5 morae in Japanese, and morae are not exactly syllables. Japanese morae/moras can be consonants in some contexts, for instance. So Kerouac had the right idea when he invented the short freeform American haiku, as well as the pop haiku.

To write something approximating a traditional haiku, you need a phrase and a fragment, with some attempt at a kireiji (cutting word) between them. A trad haiku isn't all one sentence, and it's not three fragments, it's in two parts. Anyway, haiku doesn't need the syllable count, doesn't use capitalisation or punctuation (though em dashes can approximate kireiji), doesn't need anything other than being a short, pithy, three-lined poem about direct, concrete observation, though some sort of twist in the meaning is useful. (These rigid, capitalised, 5/7/5 English haiku are just clunky.) It should never really be too abstract, should not include references to time, and ideally should include some reference to the season.
my window open
to all the night—
sheep coughing out there
halfway through she stops—
she's rushing around
weaving secret things

forgot about the Roches...



listen out for Robert Fripp playing lead guitar...
Odetta dying just after Barack Obama gets elected feels somehow right, if it could ever feel right for her to die. At least she lived to see the moment, if not its outcome. The Neocons who lied to the world, who created Al Quaeda in show trials so that they could maintain the military hegemony of the US, who created the final ten years of the Cold War when it should have been long over, are gone, and probably for some time to come. Will it make things any better? Yes it will. At least for a while. Right now we need strong symbolism, and Obama is symbolism that all the world is reading with a little more hope. RIP Odetta. Sadness. But some optimism too.

Odetta: 1930 - Dec 2 2008. The passing of one very big voice.

john coltrane
piping the bright rats
to the falls
.
same room
same time

same stuff

sameness
is same enough
.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

ten more cigarettes
and this old red wine—
night blowing bubbles
.
.
I think a person
just blew past on those high winds—
December breathes deep
.
.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

helicopter yoghurt (to Alfie)

there on the world
they sit closed and tight
as dormice
with traffic zooming
around them

whup...........whup............look

even my mother ..................
with that................look it shines

I approach them carefully
with embraces
............................to sweep them back

they are skitterish as dustbowls
—gone wild around me
but damn it anyway that

they have come back to me
in such shuddering beds of soft acid
that

nothing but the old cries
to be with them through all nights
nothing now ....................but that
.
.
it seemed all so flat—
as I walked over the bridge, though,
the world changed
box by the window
where the night comes in—
i'm just gone now
i've got a silly hat
and i trust no one
—now an owl peers out

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Made Uneasy

deserving or relevant or not they exploded
over the lakes and ponds
of the Western forests
while I always spoke always
.....................like that it was like stars
that ruptured little sacs and sent such rills streaming
and all night though we talked
while lights burned in water
one little event slicked throughout
and neither of us
could quite.............. say
what it was
though both of us remarked
when it arrived
.........................and both of us
saw it depart like an invisible person
who was now done with it
like the curling white smoke
of lavender on some limestone hillside very far away

.....................................she of course didn't question
but turned again to her flours
...............................with an impassiveness
at which I
could only marvel

knowing nothing but her weft of distant herbs
.
.

see into your own future

Monday, December 08, 2008

John Coltrane blows ashen wind at the stars

Jack and Bill and Allen
were so incontinent
so profligate
with their feelings
that even a dead cactus
crushed by the wreckage
of a fallen aircraft nearby
would not fail to arouse them

squatting there in the desert
in sudden angst
already turning yellow

fuck me says Bill
you see that?
not any more says Allen
oh do it anyway says Jack
and he laughs like stars
of quiet thunder
all down the road
from the New Jersey turnpike
to Santa Cruz

with their poems
just waiting to ship out

with those songs
of the open sea
arrayed before them

as so many fingers of quiet mescal
.
.

so rational creationism and celery salt

so i overheard this bunch of lads in a pub
talking about girls

how haughty they were
how superior
how intoxicated with all of it
(either of them—it doesn't matter)

it could have been ten thousand years ago
circling kopjes on the veldt
hammering out the music of fear

imagine that

imagine dancing
dressed as a wolf

hoping she watches closely

your bare feet in dust in firelight
in ochre and spit
in shapes
in love with this moment
all your fathers
before you
buried in your mother's chest

so many nutrients
for the spirit that is quiet

fierce as shaking trees

as the stone drums spiral in

so big so little, all of it forever

forever yours
.
.

poetry your most ardent enemy

children of the night
what music they make — Dracula


//what is it with tragedy//

how the world flows out in strings
that remain unmanifest
known only by their edges

in 1000 years this will appear ridiculous

but Ur Nammu was a keen archaeologist
who delighted in discovery

the very first Gulf War
is between Yahweh and all humanity

O how little how fervent we scrape
for such broken vessels
containing such nothing

the louder you scream
the faster we go

oh all night she kept at it
rubbing away like that

.................................................let's sing it again
.................................................with real feeling
forever

love and nothing

now bring yourself here
and shut up

we are almost cooked

we are doing all of history
in a sudden flurry of skirts

she seemed almost unaware of her legs

and Mediterranean salt
(a mile deep they say)

hush

or you will wake my creatures
.
.

song to the siren

this could really be 3000 years ago

kiss riff

this little gentle kiss arcing
from the sky
as she reached down
and that reaching itself
that lowering
her eclipsing of the world
the sky the sun
the coolness that came with her
the sudden warmth and coolness
her smell of grass and daylight
her aura of wild birds
her seriousness
that floated there
her weight suddenly
her reality and closeness
her focus
her sheer engagement
the whirling of all of that
which was beyond all sex
and all confinement
and category
all he wanted to do
was hold her face
and kiss it
with the gratitude
of outer planets

until rain made it slowly stop
.
.

edges riff (notes for a poem)

'in the middle of the night
we go walking in our sleep' - Billy Joel

not understanding that the feeding of infants
involves an ancient revolution
of the spirit
I didn't know
that my neural pathways
had faded into choked forest trails
and that I was being regarded
with some impatience
by something infinitely older
than myself
from the shrieking treetops

he stamped his huge tiny feet
and threw food in my face

until I learned better manners
.
.
blue and silver lights
around my field of vision—
neuritis is back

Cliché and meta-awareness in poetry.

The thing is to avoid as far as possible unconsciousness and that drifting into cliché that comes from being hypnotised into one's own poetic fervour. If it feels nice and warm and proud, you know that somewhere it seeped in while you slept. Cliché is all sorts of things; it's not just known phrases or constructs; it can be in the feel or the atmosphere; it can be in the reference to a mood. Some poems are entirely cliché in that they depend wholly upon warm tracts that approximate other warm tracts elsewhere, and they are effectively unconscious paraphrasings of earlier poems. This is almost a universal malaise in poetry, especially poetry that situates itself at some earlier position in the canon. (And why would anyone ever want to do that, if not to avail him/herself of the scenic portfolio of that point in history?)

But if it IS conscious, then of course something else is happening, or rather is being done. And that is the essence of it— is being done, not is happening... The poet is actually active in this, not just sleepwalking with elves. And that activity says that the poet is still alive, has managed to keep one eye just about focused on the oncoming monstrosity and bafflement of life, and has just about managed to scrawl something honest to send back. There's almost no way to achieve this other than to write obliquely and in some coded fashion. In that there is at least the hope that something will get through without interference, that someone somewhere will somehow arrive at the appropriate nexus to decode something from the static.

If you lapse into cliché then no one will ever know exactly what it was that you were transmitting, as all cliché is effectively dead language with hopelessly imprecise meaning. If it has ever been used in more than one context, then it has become ambiguous, and all precision has been subverted. This is why the deliberately imprecise and ambiguous is the only real accuracy available in language. It allows, finally, the reader to receive his/her own message through the medium of another human. That makes true poetry a form of divination for the reader; and that requires the reader to bring accuracy, courage, concern and honesty to the reading. It is no longer about entertainment, it is about the consciousness of warfare and flesh and mortality, and the reader is now the writer, without whom no poem is ever completed.

But all of this is also untrue. As it says at the door to the Magic Theatre, 'Price of admission, your mind'... (Hermann Hesse -- Steppenwolf)

Etc.
.
.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

yet another light
drops from the ceiling--
someone stop me

killers shaiku

somebody told me
that you had a boyfriend—
who looked like a girlfriend?
.................................................
reading my new book
of Kerouac haiku—
the night smells of sick
in the desert's heave
I read of Demeter—
a bee walks on my hand
.
.
she's already weaving
at first light—
my little spider

baptism riff (poem about a local murder of a random taxi driver)

face fruz in so animate rictus
in ices of grief see him ....................slicked hard
..................................................from Haworth to Keighley
.................[crime shine/ring/eject/spasm/spush
.........[through brass the hedges............shiver of night

there by The Merry Melon


.............man .............under streetlight /sur les pierres/
.............a screwdriver and a hammer /quand le cloche sonnait douze/
.............................................a pound of bananas /les blancs debarquent/
........waiting to choke for a taxi some set of box spanners
........ratchet/drosophila/molehead/cervix


.................................... just so damn dazzling he cries shortly after this
GSOH but frigid and unkempt seeks defining event

[preferably Pakistani
or Bangladeshi]

......................... /in grey wainscot green cctv his hands grow/up it came upon me like TV signal fire of the lambs swaying so the light-cortex of orchidectomy/petals inside wolves/lycanthropes agrasp the

dancing body in a ditch let alone like teeth they flamed drug wars and grooming
........................................ young white girls fucked hare's running
.........................................across car bonnets 240 they bet starters for Spring

.............................amphetamines/paedophilia (rivers
...............................of white blood) nous devons soumettre

.......................battered blind with a hammer tenderised such with sea salt
and rosemary his heart wall punctured balsamic au bapteme
.......................................................................to fluxes of inviability with a slothead
.who violated girls also poisoned sleepy aryan children in rivers and once drowned a dog with his
batchelors even of jism in the air so nascent a corruption how swirl like sex-stuff in a bath solid as stringy semen-soap calorised into aspic of the murder melon he hovers golden as flower boxes

look always this flurry of glissades


................................................................................vindicate with this stuffing

..............................................
of half o clock lies
...................................................is all sweptaway titters of
dead petals for the keeper
.
.
.
ten guinea fowls
on warm tiles round the chimney—
all scared of the snow
a slate slid from the roof
& took off his ear—
high winds tonight
all night
they couldn't figure
the quiet treasure map
electricity
and frosted grass—
the night air whirls with leaves
she has that look
of distant need—
our clothes flutter like flags
hammering from next door
—bare trees like river deltas
viewed from space
under a flurry
of teals—clouds
of eager tadpoles

Friday, December 05, 2008

haiku

under thick grey ice
tiny hearts slowing—
those frogs are not dead
.
.

gorilla

vast splashing black
and silver pique—
gorilla in the bath
.
.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

the death between us

...............................................I was in two minds
both of them sucking swallows off power lines
........................grunting
there in the wet fields
........................but wait

no means no
O this winter will carry secrets to the grave
a look of transpiration about him through the smog-ice—

Pshaw! it means this in English but he don't grasp
.............between this and this
...............................some other event

...............................back and forth back and
..................................it dances
................like some evil child in memory

.........................this means this

.........................but no not now

like...... this....... he ........picked at her
threw her into some myth
that would shortly expire

look I was watching you fall into it
......moments stuttering by
........... a car across the road scared/counting

...................
waiting now for the blow
.........the glass flooding ....out

... was always............... coming,
there in tumbledown oils of language
dry.................... doors flapping

in winds/winds

[there in the bath covered in hair
sitting upright looking at him
malevolent, matted, masticating]

........................monster

.........................where you got shoved and shaved
...........................................................wriggled like a

O jolly it up sweetheart
with your inner fires

.......................[yes even this fetish
...............he has of light]

now we are stifled kittens
murmuring lastly in the barrel

.........now so sudden you need to know
....................................all of it

.............................................now

..................my last tooth already gone

........................through the cranial arch
..........................................of the dearest
.
.
.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

forever on ghost highways looking always to the left for the jumping shadow that follows behind hedgerows

let's get this straight

the dawn only half came up
and anyway i was intoxicated utterly
there in that doorway
while the water kept rising

O you cried you stupid

is there any way out of such things

I didn't know, didn't claim to know

but the night

from afar missives of pain
shook their way in

you know how that fucking squawks

new worlds folded here
while we didn't sleep

now at the end of it
grey tides roll in
and we sit apart
with little to say

death he said death, look
just like that
and I looked sideways
not wanting to look damn it

all up the wall there, death
crawling on little legs
like creeping cream
.
.
.

heron haiku

an old heron
lifts dripping from the canal—
winter sunrise

night wind senryu

I dreamed her voice
.............waking me softly—
only night wind now

Monday, November 24, 2008

frost pops haiku

now frost has daubed sad white
shadows of all our houses
along the back field
.
.
.

petrol lit the night far off

as though some strange unknown animal
had entered our bodies
collective.......soft...... marine
we felt quickly for our urgent purses
....................of disaster
knew suddenly
that only some cold wind from some north
..............wasteland veldt
of what feels like............ a soul
could make this apparition evaporate

down there
in leaden understanding
hardheaded men in caps
.......................beat all day

and at dusk we rutted our hats aloft

never was there a time for this
such spreading pink evil

now in wild flares
petrol lit the night far off
.
.
.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Nothing is true, everything is permitted. Lala rocks the kasbah.

Note to anon: Thanks for the comments. The reply feature is currently not working, so I'm replying here. Anyway, glad you grasped it, as I'd have hated to try to explain it! I guess I was trying to get to some sense of early childhood and how language and experience and personality sort of accrete almost like a geological process. So I was trying to keep it below the surface and steer away from overtly familiar structures... Anyway, many thanks for the comments, and I'm happy that you liked it. Steve.
Can't seem to get the links list to work right now. So I'm sticking a link to Deb Calverley's blog here...

buccal outflow (for Louie at 516 days)

.............O it is only a mere
,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,sunshot
,,,,,,,,,,,,that sluts askance
such codex of angers
................as would confluence

..............such he humours
..............such he angles

..................................the little one
.........still unearthed
................................in all his bootings

.................too mainmasted yet
.................................his earliest gulfing

...........yet too unsupportable
.......................................O too topheavy

..............he (as) [rocks] —tumbles
..............in native headwater

—nyanza-rainbow-thunder—

(there of words
to be
all spray
clung asunder)

his graspèd vellus, lanugo
.......................spining here such
..................calcitics & miracules

...............................beneath all protologues

.............as leave all his lingule

.................in the wanting now
..........................only of burgeons

.....................here to upstutter
.
.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Le Dormeur du Val - an inflected translation of Rimbaud for Remembrance Sunday 2008

it is a hole of greenery where a river sings
hanging madly to grasses
................................tatters of money
......................where sun of the proud mountain shone
it is a small valley which foams of rays a young soldier
stops open, naked head, and the nape
bathes in cool blue cresses
....................sleep it is wide in grass, under the naked one
pale in its green bed where the light rains the feet
...................................in the gladeoli, it sleeps smiling
as would smile a sick child, it makes a nap Nature
.......................rocks it warmly: it is cold
the perfumes do not make any more shiver
..........................its nostril; It sleeps in the sun
.......................the hand on its tranquille chest

two red holes on the right
.
.

just got a thing about this song today

.

.


Retrospective war poem... Found Object.

"As long as we are alert and observant Saddam Hussein is not a threat to his neighbours. He's a nuisance, he's an annoyance but he's not a threat. That we achieved. It was never our objective to get Saddam Hussein. Indeed, had we tried we still might be occupying Baghdad. That would have turned a great success into a very messy, probable defeat."

—Brent Scowcroft. National Security Advisor to President George Bush Snr.
Interviewed in 1996.
.
.
.

Monday, November 03, 2008

a love critique of economic collapse

now again a brutal man

some mess of crouches
sharp words
facial wire spread beneath

skin

in the arches
shovelling in stray dogs
shoving into leaves, groundswell

seeking out undifferentiated filth
sucking in cigarette ends
eyes in there somewhere alive, cruel

hammers in April

clanging

for prey to draw near

enough to contaminate
with whatever cold pestilence

speaks of love
.
.
.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

wild dogs learning to fly (for Alfie and me and the moment)

dog came over two fences
sunny day and everyone laughing
came bounding
young Pit Bull full of fun
jumped up at my little boy
nutted him hard
all in zest all in exuberance
nearly broke his nose
figure it weighed about 8 stone
he weighed 4
and he just didn't have the attitude
for this nasal crushing
this attack
didn't want to be seen to cry
not in front of the neighbours
and the dog
so he burrowed into me
into my leg
and shook
while I held him
and held the dog
and the steam train
blew past
and the sky was pretty blue
and from someone's window
a paper aeroplane
headed down

and we followed it
into the dust
all of us wide-eyed
except the dog

just didn't get it
kept jumping
like a fool making faces
all this transcendent moment
.
.
.

the overall levity of sudden sex

somehow my concern was the American election.

but that fell apart quickly
when she took her knickers off
and topographic events flooded

it was difficult to get back
after the trees spilled
and the morning cast a scatter

as always some cold geese
clattered past
in the augmented detail

of wildfire
but this but this but this
i tried to ask

by fuck she shouts
i'm done with this
hits the black roads at dusk
things settling
all clocks fucked
whirring
like grasshoppers

one little thought
drifting home
alone
wearing tight pants
saying No

now all the heavy locks
of midnight
can't put this right
.
..

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

oh those awful integrals speak in cockles of cold doom

enough white phosphorus to burn up a roomful of people

came out of her mouth
while she splayed
down there in mud
I have always tried, don't you see
as if oh out there like that they played
on the Whitby sands
some whale had flotted up and cold bespake
like washed up brothers and kamerades
trotting off to stalingrad's cold fucking

oh look here fuck they said and continued
where integers of apparence
oh no oh no
start restart bonnie and every little day

that you don't come
will be a season
cranking the same wire

even the very idea

but by winter this gate no longer

for now, you know

just this

love of wet cathedrals
of the mouth
.
.

Friday, October 24, 2008

a shallow love song

in and now out the same door
like all knives whirling
our utter politics in collisions
of limestone pavements

across all this she travailed
with sepia sandbags
of County Clare

all sailroads to traverse
and only 8 o clock
by the whale's chime

this big hand by the night's wild travel
points to 12
the little hand
flickers and stops

iris of heart attack hope
and love of small things
and wild places

be certain now be sure

it's that time
in between
where the hands don't count

it's okay to be scared here
to lie down and breathe
to lie a little
before waking
.
.
.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

if like this like this

hands in your hair
your hair your hair of olive wind
if language flowing outward

if filaments of memory if
everything here warm slow
wild and slow-wild if how you come to life

in my hands your hair flowing out
if all morning flowing out descending bright birds
our inside us calling long ago this moment keening

your contours your hachures your ascent
your planes your whirling Sufi gasp
if like this, like this

heartbeat and breath and hollow ground
and midnight morning and all day and dusk arcing between
blue spirit flames, radio crackling

and if along our hillsides
like this, like this, we start to collapse

fading red shadow of this our body

spray of night reeling out

[duende, red-black, in murmurs]
.
.
.

ALL U KNOW ABSOLUTLeY FUCK

ALL U KNOW ABSOLUTLeY FUCK

WHY i HATE FUCKS:

Ok see ya hi boy
I sure love when you ignorant bastards
come through my line
acting like you know everything

why i hate ignoramus freaks:

u know absolutley fuck all
i dont know how old u r (but i do)
and you know grow up, wake up,
and quit fucking whining to me you ignorant

I NOMINATE DAVE SMITH
AS THE IGNORANT BASTARD OF THIS PAGE
(FUCK ALL OF YOU) HOW CAN YOU IGNORANT BASTARDS SAY?

why I hate houses of freakin apollo:

fucking ignorant bastards hit me
with something I haven’t seen before
fuck all these conservative boneheads
if you're sick of stereotypes by all


why I hate blacks:

fuck all the surs the norts the cripps and bloods,
matter of fact fuck all
when are this ignorant bastards going?

why i hate Bush in Brasil go home nazi bastard:


aren't you paying attention you ignorant bastard?
there's three days on the Senate floor
and I can't fuck all them old men fast enough


why epileptics I hate:

fuck all of you who hate something
and fuck sum1 in your family had epilepsy
would you want them ignorant bastards?

Nigeria’s Next Top Model:


fuck nigeria fuck africa and fuck all
the blacks that continue to blame the world
haw u fink africa is fulll of low lives..
ure jus an ignorant bastard

why I hate you fucking Yankee bastards:


why I hate preaching:

all you fucking aetheist God hating
motherfuckers need to suck
GO THE FUCK BACK where you came from
ignorant bastard scum

Friday, October 17, 2008

Mythos (Buddhism)

stillness
connection with night
the mother collapses
down the stairs
lies there
breathing hard
wondering what next
the father roams
in the garden
uprooting shrubs
roaring
finally she makes it
to the phone
he's throwing branches
at the windows now
screaming out there
she gets through
hears a voice
name
details
she can't speak
he's here
in the door like a black wind
grabs her by the legs
drags her out
yelling for her kids
down to the river
throws her in twisting
sits meditating
breath slowing
looking at the water
night, trees
he's a Buddhist
sitting there
peaceful
bald, bearded, beaming
the moon shining
upon him
.
.
.
(Published in Underground Voices Feb 2008)
.
.
.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Sunday, October 05, 2008

night samphire (of violet denial)

five bells crash soft as the night's loft weeps
fog in the sea-troughs' lilt―tossed in the lorn byres

a tender opening haze of the hillocks creeps
quiet on flanks in the misted faery samphires

―bellowed as all grey bells fingers feast slow reaps
and all points paling—ghost as green lune-spires

mount the dead thrift headland's loom, nor sleeps
in gloom below—Hist! the flesh slow fires—

rears the riven ghost moon—her cool sprite peeps
whites of night under covers thrust in slow gyres

she comes with seaweed skims in skirted deeps
of rills and seeps before tides glist the mires'

brims in dawn frets and furrowed neaps
full for follow and all fusted elvet pyres

there at wind's flood we last leaps
once more the gust—till night expires
.
.
.

Thursday, October 02, 2008



the enragé on the guillotine 1798

Strapped to a board
his body jerked and spasmed
for some moments
as the last volts of rage,
the final syllables of paroxysm,
earthed through the extremities.
His face that had fallen pale

into a basket
worked through varieties of wildness
and cruelty
witnessed by all who looked in,
as though he was not yet done with us
and our milky constitution,

as though the febrile soul would slide out,
would manifest before the assembly
as a demon that grasped and crushed

and devoured, and those
who perceived this straining
fell back,
left the square briskly,
pushing out through the drunkards
like swimmers frightened by a shark.
In this way, oscillating
with great wildness and fury
and explosion,
the Enragé passed,

his body finally growing limp.
Even his face, pale, romantic and bloody,
ceased contorting and at the last
adopted a sad aspect
as of one who has looked
into a savage crowd

through dead eyes,
and has seen such things there
as have made him glad
to be gone quickly from that place.
.
.
.
(Published in Underground Voices Feb 2008)

Monday, September 29, 2008

something going off somewhere

"Gonna see the River Man, gonna tell him all I can" - Nick Drake

if there had been any sign of it
more tender
weeping amidst grocery

it was by god gone now
there in all her pieces she crouch not singing
squat somehow the way we thought
afterwards to describe it squat-dark
of itself gargoylular all sad
at the parting of such winds there
........................................................aloft

in her pieces and location like that
come off it, we, come off it, you
off it, off. and this ululated, this on high
..........................................this to no avail
................this a mapping rolled

apace grating sensations she forgot
by a end of some earlier dissociation
that got her thinned beneath, attenuated, envelopt
in dermal flag and sheath let us now look
...................let us now turn

(no your poetry is nothing but chaff
only the stuff of directories, invoices
stolen histories, unvoices, this, this, this
many times I got to tell you this
the real your unembodied
falls dead within you no without you
without it will not do will not do not)

it after is not all not to say not at least uninteresting

look at the mother they say look

you want to know look
here in the crevices of her dustbowl

a seasonal disaster spinning
...................................................chinooks
though she clutches, clutches, cries stop O stop
look so funny, so wide and flat so funny
.....................................O after all that of course we were entitled
.....................................
.............................................exhale/exhale(exhale)

..............[worlds soon to come will know
..............no tooth decay]

(Himmler was (exactly) this age when
...................................he crunched his
............................................................bubble
..........................but I am not pessimistic)
........................................my geology sings:

phreatic slits the padding planes slewed
.....times leached calcites, lactated rock-stuffs
..........—all glint and shear, glimmer of renewed
..................lime integrals in deep and dash, roughs/
......................smooths as though—as steep chymical-stewed
.........................—resolvèd ruin's dry-rearing cloughs

....................[feet in ancient time—her thigh-heart enter
...................,the Sotadic (undead sephira Daath)—we wight
....................her topographic shift—quite the Red Preventer
....................in its ancient time—sped tricoteuse light]

because we're here because we're here because we're here

vadose, she is, escutcheon, keyhole, wet
.....................lights below ground
....................................voices in her hollows

............................far-off in the streamways
...............................all that no sign of it now
.
.
.
.
.
.



.
.................[joints still crarking—crows not shaping
....................up wind/rain across playing fields of daylight]
.
.

Basho's mind of Christ

it was that rainy morning
the trains oozed past like snails
clouds of shit stuck to their long heads
she said I think you should
go

talk
to this other woman
I said
you're on a martyrdom trip
sound like my mother
sound like chaffinches over
Dresden

should I light the fire
what other woman do

you mean
anyway
you know the one, she said
as the train blew a faceful
in the rain
the one that's always there
in your
mind of

Christ
the frogs around the green ponds outside the stations
thought Christ
fuck this

jumped

six days into the trip
we found them white-side up
legs wide apart
in our thick soup
like jokes

fat dead jokes

about Basho
n

.
.(Published in Ditch, 2007)

gas and gold

oh whether to go with gas or solid fuel

the foraging aspect of all this
delights her deeply and she spends a minute
parcel of thermal energy weighing
it in her so inherent hands
before she crosses
herself like a nun in a sad Autumn

through the thoroughgoing trees along
which she now her him not hasty travails
[......................]

so passeth the winds of cold gold

.
.
.

The Orzel Project in Admit 2

5 Orzel Project poems published in Admit 2. Start at page 19 (collaborations between Steve Parker, JR Pearson, Pam O'Shaughnessy)

Saturday, September 27, 2008

radio radio

and all the windows in all the world
through all the cornfields
will not be enough
to crack open
this last remaining corncrake egg
that will never now rear a little head
gulping at golden air
.
.
.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Of Some Far Off Autumn Morning (a fractured prayer)

your ghost came to me in dreams

still young and confused
and asked me why I was gone

I said I looked into the future
and didn't find you there

I looked and looked
in the rocking and the creaking
of our mother's armchair
where your hair once shone

like a mat of gold stuff
and I couldn't find you there

and now all my days all my days
don't contain you

and I can't answer
and I can't not

and this is me forever
clutching at the last wisps of you
filled with this failure
of not standing firm
against that awful tide
that I saw coming
and that I too became

and it's Autumn now
and you won't be there
in caravans and campfires
and the orchard's low glides

you are a hole in the air
that no nature abhors
that nature elides

and I wish you would sleep
and I wish you would not sleep

little lost friend
not even a peep
.
.
.

Drapetomania (to Buddy Kwow)

"Expect a little turbulence, ladies and gentlemen,
for there are monsters in our midst" - Madeleine Shine


they have poisoned the water them
.......................their sickness you can't even
..................................sweet
the sensation like shade comes
.............................above waves
................she walks................... but slowly
....................................as traffic (swings low)
...................downtown at noon on Penny Lane
(homage to slave-ship captain James Penny)
...........Penny Lane in your ears and in your eyes and in

the catch of the throat is the crying

.........................of the edges, the edges
...................dropping away into.gulfs

......................where you have not grown
..........(there are no clear pathways here)

—through unhealed frontal cortices still the Middle Passage
..........................................................urges to run
...........................feel the myth-gene
comin' for to carry you home

[a stroke he says (a)(dark) imagine stroke a (angel) [blue]down reaching
swinging stroking out [suburban] low [skies] imagine (wiping) so circuits he says
such an erasure (touching) in the unheard (such a thing) imagine]

..................(?)somewhere here, somewhere we forget(?)

................"there had to be some spirit at work"

.............................lilting sideways
......................................in early frets/mists
will sleep better than the gentlemen do on shore...
are built on purpose for this trade...
are accommodated with air ports and gratings
for the purpose of keeping...


................where doors found beneath growths
...............of ivy and unreason
.
......................................unused for years
..................wayward and swollen
...............with fruit no one will now [look into]

............(O this the moment we feel it most
............................here behind the halftown draperies
......................where feral trees sing sweet
...............as rivulets of volcanic sand at dusk)

...................the moment we learn
................those pleiocene footprints—one adult
...............................one child—not strolling safe on a lost shore—
.........................holding hands at sunset—

..........................but one taking home live prey
.
.
.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

in the way of things

pulls up outside the neighbour & hax into the POV stream
rips out the soundline like despining a living cat
overrides it with Gimme Pink Apocalypse Now
whupwhup she says sudden her eyes half closed whup
whup all ahead distant hedge cleaving as we steam up

the Queen

is 101st Hairborne Adagio average redhot black
East European junkie with a kid n-n-n-n-
nineteen
babysteps to tha hart've stark Bell Huey in early
Snow fucking White Sleeping with extreme prejudice
Beauty waking the evil hedge Son of Sam Raiming her
apart who know he was even able to finish and listening

her such sudden templepig baby noises anyway
whup all down his wug-wires
.
.
.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

wetting arc (à demi-flarf)

bead control, did you mean? maybe
she let her tongue travel
(deduced from heats)
in a Kirchhoff integral (WTF?) of stroking
repeated this a few times
a liquid-solid-interface
and soil cluster,
spreading wettability
and brazing the type of head
repeated stroking
any point
along the length, thickness
capillary, thickness:
'stroking equations'

Repeat: and what if she just shoved him the love
she craved?

.
.
(Published in Ditch 2007)

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

the level above sport













I can't write this
can only assemble artefacts
polygraph readouts intermediate or greater
(Please respond ASAP)
(one level above me right now, we the undersigned)
remove all associated physical effects:
tools (balls, bats etc), accessories, location
side by side in the air
A simple, easily-operated device is provided
by which a 'dead' receptacle at a level above

(fragments of grass whirring in sunlight)

Oh for God's sake look it's happening here again right now
in the air it is happening now!
.
.
.
(Published in Ditch 2007)

some heavy morning some sky will ring

momentarily that this event of eating breakfast
in a cafe alone (where no one else was
and where there was no sign

of their ever having been)
was almost a perfect experience of life in itself and now
briefly he allowed himself to smile down at the table
though it shook him to do it

and it was quiet now in his head
but then he changed and those things he conveyed
so easily into his mouth these
sick saccades appeared alien and vile
and he wondered really about

really about

it was only ten minutes to walk
from here to a station
where transports could be arranged
to carry his body home
but he didn't know if he could make it

with such gathering of sexual uncertainty
as swept over him now

he flung it from him
walked out of the room shouting

they would hold this against him, no doubting

such conventions as he were flouting

he clutched at his genitals as he went
and slavered into the street where

with great clouting and shouting

the car hit
and he sprayed for thirty metres
until he hit a tree
which took his head off
removing all ambiguity about the matter

shit
he said
for the final time
I've lost my fucking head

I'm now all spatter
and I wonder
does it all matter

most important meal of the day
they say
with cloudmouths of grey
don't they, hey?


.
.
.
(Winner of Poem of the Month Sept 08 at www.criticalpoet.com)

Sunday, September 14, 2008



train

how the words are pressed down flat
as trains under snowclouds with a same

thin urgency none of the breaking forth how
we want to hear them lift out of this tunnel

of a barometric stifle how into some flood
downhill to how complex little life-stations

smog and history for the rushing

all along the valley dragging at live prey
sucking it in

a live burial

a sheer shriek tells you
if you know of such things

soon it will snow

a valley and a train and a words
flat out with the waiting
.
.
.