#12 – ‘The Knight with the Sorrowful Face’

The Knight with the Sorrowful Face

A forest near Seville.


    How slight a bauble is the intellect,
    to crack so easily. But soft, he comes,
    his antic mood still on him.

Enter QUIXOTE, mad, wearing a barber’s basin


                                  Rocks and stones
    and trees and grass and streams, oh hear the tale
    of piteous Don Quixote, scorned in love!


    I will approach him now. Art thou then he?
    Art thou the great and noble Don Quixote?

Cardenio, Act 4, Scene 2

The old man was a nutter,
sure enough, with his talk of Roland and Amadís.
But he was a good man with it.
Before he lost his marbles
he often helped us,
when mildew spoiled the grapes
on the vines, or the rains failed
and the wheat-fields dried to dust.
That was why I joined him, not for fevered promises
of islands and earldoms, but because
he needed me. When, in the night,
he shook and cried out in his sleep,
I was the one to calm him,
use a wet rag to cool his face.
But that dick Cervantes
made me into a credulous oaf,
and now this windbag Shakespeare
has cut me from the story altogether.
It tears my heart to see Señor Quijote
made into a comic turn
for the drunken stinking London crowd.
A pox on writers.


#11 – ‘thoughts’

I really need to spend more time on the titles.


I light the gas and wonder
how many specks of prehistoric life
died so I could fry
some bacon for my sarnie?

And if I died at sea
and was enfolded in the silt,
would there be enough of me
to boil the water
for a cup of tea?


#10 – ‘This Poem is Not a Pipe’

‘This Poem is Not a Pipe’

There is a gap in the world where things fall through;
bicycle clips, and leeks, and off-cuts of astrakhan,
frogspawn, gravestones, and the lids from mustard jars.

There is a place in the world where smells wait;
asparagus-scented urine, coal-tar soap, and mould-spotted copies of Proust.

Salmon leap. Flames flame. Small girls feel the mud between their toes.


#9 – no title (ghostbird)

a bit of fluff.

The ghostbird, ears wide for mice,
drifts through the seasmell.
One lapwing, startled, wakes. Clouds break

and moonshine whites the waves.
A far police car sirens
as dark moths twist above the marsh.


#8 – limerick

I couldn’t post this last night – freezope seemed to be broken. I basically took a day off anyway…

There was a young man from Bangkok
who had a remarkable clock.
It kept perfect time,
had a beautiful chime,
and at midnight it knitted a sock.


#7 – no title

no title.

long is the albatross : the song of men
diminishes : the candlefish burn bright :
the roses hiss and crackle in the night :
a blackbird coughs, splutters, begins again :

the dolls are weeping now : tectonic plates
buckle : harmonic resonances pass
around the surface of a brandy glass :
cocooned, a liquid butterfly mutates :

the trees around Sao Paolo glow with flocks
of angels : Glasgow seethes with feline lust :
the upper atmosphere sparkles with dust :
and everywhere the ticking of the clocks