Archive for February, 2014

Get off my case!

Posted: February 27, 2014 in poetry
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‘Hey you fat piece of shit, I’m going to beat your head in!’
If I could pull my head between my shoulders I would;
My heart winds up its tempo.
There is no-one else around and the creature in the red shirt is behind me.
‘Hey fat shit did you get a stick from Sam’s place?
Hey fat boy I’m talking to you!
Are you trying to follow me?’
‘Leave me alone!’ I shout.
I run into the bottle-shop with my breath a stuttering torrent,
I walk to the end of the aisle and pick out a six-pack of Little Creatures pale ale,
Then I approach the counter and say to the girl behind it:
‘That guy in the red shirt, he’s threatening and insulting me. I’m scared.’
Outside he glowers, looking thin, hungry and crazy.
I suspect he’s a speed freak – he has that hollowed out look.
An old guy behind the counter asks:
‘What’s going on here?’
I repeat myself.
Then the old guy leaves to talk to the guy in the red shirt, who is edging ever closer to the bottle-shop.
The girl behind the counter asks me why he is hassling me.
‘Because I’m fat,’ I say.
The saddest truth of all- ponderous and obvious.
I leave through the adjoining supermarket, crossing aisles to get distance behind me.
I exit the store and cross over the car-park, catching a freeze-framed picture of the old guy and my bully still talking.
I cross over the road and make the train station,
Free at last!
Thank-you God of the Angel Armies!
The train arrives and try to forget it all but I cannot.
It will not, will not fade into the mush of yesterday: bad news written in permanent marker.
Turn the other cheek, but when in doubt run away!

End of the Line

Posted: February 26, 2014 in poetry
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Am I the end of the family line?
Will I always be alone and scraping at the walls like a spider in a jar?
No-one to woo, no-one to flirt with,
Walking alone through the streets of my town,
With my friends all coupled up and cosy.
There are no wingmen.
My loneliness reverberates through the blue-black night looking for union but finding nothing.

And if I got married would I wear my Hawaiian shirt?
Would I care that she’s not Winona Ryder?
Will I enthral my in-laws with extensive knowledge of the drug habits of famous people?
While they look at me as if I were both a vagrant and a chronic self-abuser.
I am not far from either of these things but at least I won’t tell them I write poetry.
‘He’s come to take our girl away! He’s come to take our girl away!’ they gesticulate in an as yet unknown foreign accent.
Would we run out of the house, slamming the door, to elope to some hidden unknowable paradise?
Romeo and Juliet driving to the airport like amphetamine lunatics,
Then off to live on love and coconuts and stretch out in the sun like drying tomatoes.
Will we be carefree in the bewildering sunshine?

Or have a big dumb family wedding with hundreds of strangers and random relatives?
Perform and primp for a crowd of crow-voiced spectators,
Then off to a succulent honeymoon in secret motels of nuptial excitement.
Tender love eight times in one night if I’m up to it,
Then into a stylish apartment where we drink martinis and plan dinner parties,
With well-behaved children barely impinging on our stereotypical happiness.

Or will we lose ourselves in substances and vain illusions?
Two children of God lost in the elegant haze of indulgence.
We blow smoke-rings at angels!
We knit moments of infinite debauchery!
We are pinned against the universe wearing tourniquets and sucked into endless yearning for the next shot!

Or will we be happy and wholesome,
In the suburbs that bleed into endless uniform streets,
With the detritus of children everywhere but smiles on our skulls?
You and me against a galaxy of nay-sayers and divorce-mongers,
Together despite all impulses to flee,
Loneliness ends with the rumour of a whisper,
And marriage begins like an insect, like an explosion, like rain, drowning us in suburban comfort as we do the best we can with the pagan, pock-marked hours.

Poison in the TV’s glow,
Poison in the fly spray,
Poison in the radio waves,
Poison in the bread and the beer
Poison for the son of David,
Poison on the farm with DDT and Deildrin,
Poison for the sake of love,
Poison when you eat,
Poison when you breathe,
Poison in the trenches of your psyche,
Poison in your pre-frontal cortex,
Poison in the marshmallow uranium clouds,
Poison in the macrobiotic organic health food.
Poison in your petrol fuelled, smog-pumping prophecies.
Poison because God told you.
Poison from the voices in your head.
Poison in Agent Orange or mixed with your orange juice.
Poison in the endless streets of your childhood imaginings.
Poison up a tree,
Poison in the valley,
Suck it up baby it’s all there.

Ode to Melancholy

Posted: February 25, 2014 in poetry
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An evil time: everything seems shades of grey, the murdering night bears down upon me.
Is there anything more ordinary, ordinary to the extent of pain, than this moment?
It’s pretty bloody average,
Like fingernails on a blackboard.
The dogs howl for me in the streets for I hide under a mighty sorrow,
The muscles in my back twist with my yoke,
Yet I must drag it on forever beside the winding Lethe,
And shriek at the decaying bones on display around me.
The blackest of nights with no whisper of dawn,
Not a glimmer of hope lights my way.
The cruellest of moments is empty and cold,
And antidepressants cannot fathom this blackness;
No Prozac panacea for the man in the moment.
Every dream ends in an embarrassing failure,
And loneliness lurks waiting to pounce in the blackness.
Why do I have to be this way?
Worms eat my wooden tongue and tumble over into any possibility of tomorrow,
They suck puss through viaducts of longing as they eat their fill.
Each breath is cloying and wasted,
Every exhale is into a vacuum and to no effect.
Cold metal stone permeates every conversation:
No empathy, when all that is needed is empathy.
And even if they would listen,
No-one understands .
Withering poison wind knocks down every impulse to praise or laugh.
The end will come with barely a whisper.
The end will come with vodka and Mogadon.

The Night

Posted: February 25, 2014 in poetry
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I fondle the night while faceless creatures whisper,
I hide from the stars when they twinkle a tune,
I want to get under it over it through it,
I inhale the stardust, the moon-dust, the blundering incoherence of just being;
But I cannot see well and everything’s gone blue.
I wonder: who encases the circuit of longing?
How do the trees remain so green and welcoming?
I ask the moon but it remains silent and glacial.
Where am I going and what am I doing?
I remain ambivalent as I have the night and its exquisite furry children.
I see their glowing eyes and hear them scuttle.
And when the night sucks the colours from my flesh,
Spinning a vortex with fangs of glass,
I let the day flow from my veins to the ends of my withered fingers,
Over the waters of my sorrow I am dragged onward and outward,
Out of being and time,
And Into the cool air and shadowy silence of nowhere.

How do I think about how to be good,
Smoking less pot and drinking less beer?
Cigarettes not marking out the measures of time?
Seeing Jesus dance out the light from the darkness?
The Word manifest and coruscating is now more real than ever.
Motors of terrible guilt now,
Find me at the edge of tomorrow.
And if I get there will the beauty still bloom?
Will I turn into one of those wankers who hate homosexuals?
Will it seem like it’s all over now or go on forever?
Right thought and right actions for the least of these my brothers,
Praxis shining out like a light on a hill.
A saint by almost breathing in the whole Spirit,
Until it sucks at my bones and leaves me wise and infinite in the image of God.

Hips and lips and breasts and all-
Imagining being in your presence I lick the inner thigh of each moment.
Your kiss on my lips forever-
And your eyes encompass galaxies, stars and comets.
Voluptuous and witty,
Sensitive and pretty,
How is it that we get along so well,
In fantastic dreams where I can never see your face?
You act just as if you were my girl.
Take me now over the moon and onward out into space:
Let’s run away somewhere where nobody knows our names.
So that we may come together beautifully if hypothetically,
In a nocturnal Narnia.

my piggies

my piggies

Mary and Martha are my post-evangelical guinea pigs,
They don’t believe in penal substitution,
And emphasize God’s love over his wrath.
They love all their neighbours gay, addicted, promiscuous, black or white.
They love their God by instinct,
And in between eating their own poo, paper and vegetables;
And making all manner of fascinating noises,
They offer sound counsel.
Wheek Wheek! Rumble Rumble! Wheek Wheek!
They shake their bottoms while they rumble,
Then Martha mounts Mary in lesbionic joy.

Stoned Again

Posted: February 25, 2014 in poetry
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I think I can taste the top of my head-
Which seems so useless and so funny.
Colours and music weave together criss-crossing in new harmonies.
Sounds form patterns in the air:
Four-four beats have four sides.
I am born again as an empty shell of a man but warm and comfortable:
No anxiety,
No panic,
No problems,
Sticky and Crumbly joy,
Green light of dreamless night,
Infinite compassion and blue calm waters,
Inhale, exhale through curlicues of smoke.
The world gets better with every toke.

The Myth

Posted: February 25, 2014 in poetry
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I love the myth of rock and roll:
Nick Cave with a needle in his arm,
After scoring some speed from me.
Shane McGowan pissed off his head,
In the gutter but with his eyes on God.
Johnny Thunders OD’s one last time with his guitar by his side;
Keith Richards snorts his father’s ashes mixed with coke.
Kurt Cobain has a four hundred dollar a day habit because that’s all he could take out of his auto teller.
It’s all so glorious.
William Burroughs living to 80 off his head on smack,
Sepulchrally musing about shooting his wife in the head.
Punk Rock! Punk Rock!
Forever drunk now on the trails of you entrails.
Keep it together man.
These particles just won’t stop existing.
Do I have to get drunk to write a poem?
Or stoned and pissed or pinned?
Some would say the muse whispers madness that frees us,
From the critic hiding within.
Do I have to be out of my head on smack?
Or dead from barbiturates on a rail road track?
Do I have to believe in the Rimbaud light?
Do I die of love or die of fright?
Just put it all down and let it flow,
Let it dribble and let it go,
And all will be okay.
The same as it is in eternity,
Or any other day.