Be Serious

Be serious

I am not a Greek hero

Does that shock you? do my words scathe?

Be serious

That I do not need your words to kill my mother

Is that a revelation?

Be serious

Such words would be unwelcome. I would rather

You had fallen into the Nile to drown

Does that surprise you?

Be serious

Even Alexander preferred the cult of conquest to Roman adoration

(or, at least, he should have)

Do not yet deify me

Surely that is owed to you

Shrines to the unwelcome

Burned throughout a disintegrating empire

Freedom lost to the individual

Surely,

surely

I owe you that much.

 

 

Gott ist tot

Pygmalion is dead

And Galatea

Has gorged herself

On excess, glorious excess

And deprivation

Together

Torn from the inside

Shrivelled,

Emaciated

One million, million, billion atoms

And minimal cohesion

Crying in the graveyard

Cracked and broken nails scrabbling through the dusty, grey gravel

And below, to the fertile, fallow soil

Lungs black with poison self-administered

And further, to where the splinters

Tear at her gangrenous fingertips

‘Why did you mould me? Why do I decay?’

 

The gilded cot is empty. Peace! no tears

Will call the shepherd of her righteous years

Overheard (at a wedding)

-friendly, open-minded

could talk for England, of course, but what did you expect?

and the energy! out

all night

always positive – it’s funny, really

and a real bitch – but only when you need a bitch

much easier than a dog, wouldn’t you agree?

the sidekick – we all need one

-and they make such lovely pets

Thank You List

One: thank you for the light

The glowing orb that you created

And put in the sky above my home

Out of the kindness of your heart

Or if not, does it matter?

Two: write to family, or call them, or something

you haven’t spoken to them since they left

and you stayed here

and they’ll want to know all your news

and you need theirs

yes, you’ve been busy

but you can’t just cut yourself off, you’ll go mad you know

Three: well there’s none of that

clankingandchopping

but the van still comesaround

at fourthirtyam and they stillcallout

which sometimes takes on a sinister feel

callingout

Four: this is more of anaddendum

but thankyou

fordoing this

out of the kindness of yourheart

because you loveme

and youdont hurt someone you loveandcare for

just for a greenstamp that makes you

Acceptable

totheMiddleClass

To-Do List

One: see if they can get any more light in here

They haven’t put in the windows yet

And it’s terribly dark, you know

At get an electrician round, wire the place up

Get rid of that dimness.

Two: write to family, or call them, or something

you haven’t spoken to them since you moved

since you came here

and they’ll want to know all your news

and you need theirs

yes, you’ve been busy

but you can’t just cut yourself off, you’ll go mad you know

Three: talk to the council about the noise pollution

van coming around at three in the morning calling in at homes

all the noise the shouting

and the other noises the machines sort them out too

it’s impossible to get a good night’s sleep

and of course it’s irrational but you know what they say about the senses

when you can’t see

because it’s so dim you see

the other senses get stronger

and the clankingandchopping takes on a sinisterfeel

silly

Iknow

but it’s stillnoisepollution andsomeone’sgot to tellthecouncil

fourthisismoreofanaddendum

butpleasecouncilgetridofthemessitsmells

itslikeIsaid

aboutthesenses

theyrestrengtheningandidappreciateifmynosewerentassaultedyouunderstand

 

thankyouforyourconsideration