14. To Dig out Those Ditches, Then, at Least to Start

Good food does require some care
obedience then to natural process – let
the little ones grow we say, nourished
w/ syrupy pleasure

Sarah will live out of time – only
sad prejudices gendered the Ancient Ones
whatever we mean is irrelevant now
t/ how things are

Yes, the children frolic in the Victoria Gardens
giggling excesses through the shrubbery – look!
vast energies are channelled through them
no need to prune

We shall make cakes, we shall make ropes of
thorns & withies for those high worth individuals
we catch then skulking on the Esplanade: trust
yr disgust & act

13. With Maggot Exposed1

With Maggot Exposed

& how is ridging done? And why does it obtrude over simple joy? How comes all this paraphernalia, corrosive & subjective in its choices, has suddenly fallen out of my potting shed? Where has Sarah gone to now? – and was she really one of the Great Masters? Why are they almost always male and dead? How many types of carrot are there, too? What causes the pale patches? And the mess made of their juicy roots?

Are there bad ways to keep birds off the peas? Does distorting our heads assist or hinder in this? What happened to a rosy dawn on the Isle of Thanet? Is it possible these children are there? frolicking on the cliffs at Broadstairs? Should they therefore be pruned hard or moderate?

Will making an onion rope help? Why can’t we make another cake instead? How does all this relate to the continuing & ever-increasing seizure of power over us by our present high-status elite? Will they leave any rich & well-trenched burials for future archaeologists? Aren’t they more likely just to tip us all into extinction? And which are they at root? – the common scab, or wart disease? Isn’t this all clearly just the wrong way to place rock stones? Shouldn’t we politely make our thanks, and start digging out the ditches now?




 1 what sort of comment is this?

2. Out of Order I Said This (The Eternal Delusion)

on and now she just is I heard
everything will be lost to laughter
ok then act and reject cut off
your white hair

these small animals do it you’ve lost
the underlying question come mumbling in all now
that aren’t we trapped in familiar flesh again
I told her

starting again I won’t be here you said
as well this is such a mess a muck up
of beautiful red blossoms commemorating
we shall die

oh words bastard words won out
the frantic grasp high state of light
don’t they just piss you off like nothing
the eternal delusion

1. Man macht ein Gedicht

OK and now
everything that isn’t
will be lost
– so then?


2 puddings & the nut butter
– no reason not to eat
and don’t those children still need feeding?
all this white hair
– time to cut it off?


How we might begin to answer such questions
a lyric paradigm that beneath resides machinery
oh, this is a poem of duplicity
to keep trying that legacy of flesh

Sam Ladkin, “Problems for Lyric Poetry”, in edited Brian Purves & Sam Ladkin, Complicities: British Poetry 1945-2007 (Litteraria Pragensia, 2007), pp 281-284 (final quote citing Andrea Brady, “Displaces”)


Man raucht. Man befleckt sich. Man trinkt sich hinüber.
Man schläft. Man grinst in ein nacktes Gesicht.
Der Zahn der Zeit nagt zu langsam, mein Lieber!
Man raucht. Man geht kacken. Man macht ein Gedicht.

Bertold Brecht, “Über die Anstrengung”, Manual of Piety (Die Hauspostille) (translated Eric Bentley) (George Weidenfeld, 1991), p 98


repetitive always
as the doings of small animals


starting again in a late spring
– oh god! what escape
from this banal actuality of metaphor


fine & clear at last on may day
jazz trumpeting thru the high street
good day then to plant more poppies
perennial, sanguinary, disordered blossom


oh words
just words?
no never more
gnarly & basting
determined must overthrow
high status elites
they just piss