66. All The Comradeship of Deviant Art: A Praise Song by the Crowd of People Welcoming the Vagrants & Migrants Into Our City

for all my students at Harlow & Braintree, a goodly crowd

If we praise you
we praise ourselves
for we are all
the lowly people of this place

If we praise you
we praise our children
for they too bring hope
for what does not change
is the will to change
our children and yours
shall carry that on again

If we praise you
we praise our gods
familiar & flourishing
as fully here
as we or you
unabased we face them
& raise up their images
all the gods
upon the trees of this world
& all the others
their faces shine
let your faces shine
let our faces shine
radiating life between us

If we praise you
we praise our poets
for they were all strangers once
before they fell fertile & uttered

If we praise you
we praise our cousins
the blessed holothurians
lovely & sloppy
never to be eaten
addressed w/ a smile of delight

If we praise you
we praise all the moths
& all the foxes too of this town around

57. Polly & Sally Are Sarah (and Maybe Karla Too)

Do you tell us things will all be upped?
in a dream, unhidden, I do, I shall
let fancies flourish across those pathways
all inconsistencies determined

The loveliness of Winter is never passing
whoever’s where can catch its value
in the dark wood brief dapples bloom
circumstances within the sublime

The girl & the girl are foxes, women too
young & unabased by seriousness
their power will survive whatever
ever-unpassing as perpetual birth

All genders and hags & gypsies
– out of the mouth of my mother, her jaws
it said, Sally, you shan’t disobey us
don’t ascend this white horse but

The tone is like wounds: I shan’t write
only poems and a song – those things are serious
severest, unmarred and are uncontainable
we ran to the ship and thank.

56. A Praise Song by Polly Walker in Honour of Winter

Let Winter be praised with serious unseriousness, for we are perpetual students at the Hilson School of Vagrant Poetics, and Winter has sheltered us as we wander like foxes through her hidden assarts & her semifictional stretchers.1
Let Winter be praised as she is utterly variable & veering, sloppy & imprecise, because she is always determined not to merely impress but to be whatever.
Let Winter be praised for letting us flourish within her clear air, & flourish too within her turbid air, both of which we have learned to love as they are.
Let Winter be praised as she tells us how to survive her severest blasts unabased, creeping in & hiding where we shall not be found, then switching and leaping out fully formed, like her sunshine.

Winter’s praise is due as she is a paradise of painters, unshowy & subtle, without monetary value or sentimental tone.
Winter’s praise is due as she is unmarred by any wounds of loveliness, but dapples from sublime squalor to a killing perfection however she fancies.
Winter’s praise is due to her bold & childlike inconsistencies, which catch her enemies unawares as their calculations must lead them astray like a roped line of absurd climbers ready for the avalanche.
Winter’s praise is due like the smoke ascending from our thin fire of faggots, passing out & fading into her fertile void.



1 and the merry organs? as we choose

46. Slippy Sloppy Doodah (from another vagrant song)

Here we are with the gypsy girl
an inspired study I will say
simplicity should flourish best
in some paradise of painters

Inside this landscape, foxes
are our sympathies not with them?
they forage underneath the messy sky
not abased by the wound of loveliness

Guys & girls & bishops
all you vagrant utopians veering
heroic as fucking gasoline
without single-mindedness or status

No pressure; exclude pursuit; open
oh, open now!
bold & childlike inconsistencies
just life inside this void

Together maybe we demonstrate the imprecise
our appearances not adequate yet nonetheless
somehow to shine, a fire of faggots
presented in a sorry field
spat upon in destitution’s calling

36. Now Open, We Hope

Oh big
dogs too
no not
their heads
it’s complicated
something to
focus on

it’s not
i deal
good morning
saturdays; crash!
all dead
all here
accept fate
yr place
accept or
better not

unabased today
kiss all
my scars
dutiful pleasure

i can’t
think what
is possible
learnt it
& flourish

hullo there
tell me
yr story
agricultural college
at school
last year
probably 16
very nice
bit snooty
they’re right
take on
& off
we go

this is
narrative now
no voids
connective tissue
took it
every where

a funny
little thing
a fox
quick divine
appeared and
then gone

gosh Mr
Hughes1! you
are inescapable
a dark
suspicion but
filial piety
we don’t
choose we
work with
the given
even you
to night

do you
want to
return ??
why no
need she
can’t if
Pauline we
dance as
we go
fine when
we do
it OK?

all horrible
nothing works
now i
don’t care
go shout
don’t care
what trend
just shine
clear bright
i decide
now open



1 more familiar to some of you as husband to the unfortunate but now justly more famous Sylvia – thank you, Veronica