Ballad Of The Lame Duck

We travelled together
To a country pub,
Twice down the lane
And called ‘The Lame Duck‘.
Hillsides abounded,
You could roll Cheddar downward,
Seats of stone
Beside summer-westward.
The riverlet rilled,
Smells from the grill,
A rusty sign twinged
With sounds of relief
As we entered a darkness
Devoid of belief.

On your thumb you twisted
An emerald ring,
And down in my heart
I heard your soul sing
Songs of sufficiency,
Songs of lament,
Funerary orations
Deeds, necessary, and
Seed preparations,
Epitaphios Logos,
Stored within an amulet.
You turned to me and slowly said
Do not be sad that I am dead;
An eye for an eye,
A tooth for a bed,
Cat got my tongue
A seventh judge said.

Many more crossed
The same riverbed
Before you stepped into
The last wildnerness.
Wide expanses,
Better unsaid,
I roamed alone
And into the red.

Talus

I’m sweeping up your worries
They’re going in to bags,
I walked a week to market
And slept beneath the crags.

I heard that there are traders
Who buy and sell our fears;
They hide behind disguises,
They whisper in our ears.

I’m sweeping up your sorrows,
Flung from a coastal talus;
The market’s shutting down,
Love is now the ballast.

Manifesto Poem

I am going to write
From my veins
Until paramedics
And care assistants
And teachers
And anyone
And everyone
Who lives
With goodness within
And compassion,
And moral compasses,
Are paid the same
As politicians
And financiers,
As celebrities
And over-inflated
Sportspeople who
Warm their hands
At the braziers
Where merchants burn
The souls of nations.
We will puncture those
Inflated bladder-balls,
For life is filled
With a natural appetite
To reach for ways
Beyond their devices,
Beyond the doctrines
Designed by desire
And ego, beyond
You and I as two
Distinct entities,
For if politics
And those other
Primacies are
Institutions for Lies,
Institutionalised
By their own nightmares,
Then I am the vein,
And I am the peace
To undo deceit,
I am the pen
To re-write
The contracts
And promises failed
By self-serving men.

Ode To Compassion

If governments spent
As much taxpayer funding
On Compassion
As governments do spend
On posturing
And prevention,
Assassins and
Suppression,
Navel gazing
Ministries of War,
Prostitution of Race,
Antagonisms,
Beaurocracy
And laundry bills,
Then would we restore
Purity of purpose,
Currently a famine,
A hundred year long drought,
From the current pretenders
Through the Tudors
And Dark Ages,
All the way down until
Timon of Athens.

If only the ancient
Predecessors
Had invested in
Forums for Compassion,
Perhaps our sufferance
Would subsequently lessen,
Instead of obedience to
These Departments for Death
And Injustice.

The Empty Chest

My heart is the shape
Of the hidden parts
Of Hobart, underground,
Where organs were first
Blueprinted in secret.

In my formative days
Training as a registrar
In unrequited love
I marvelled at Nature,
How it compacts with

Discipline, (Mr.Jobs proved
Something similar when he
Jettisoned a prototype
Into his gourami tank and
Oxygen bubbled, perfidiously),

Meticulous contraptions
Unrelenting, without
Revisions but always
Winning, passing exams,
The questions it set.

If only the Hippocratic
Students had seen
Where Kindness ducts
And Goodness bled,
Glands of Compassion,

Instead of nephritis
Riddled kidneys,
Lung diseases,
Heart bypasses
And an empty chest.