Letters

My singular
Vital sign
For I am alive
Is poetry;
Modes and codes
And odysseys;
Odes pulsing
Through my
Malodorous veins
I did not arraign,
And perpetrating
Nevertheless
My entire body,
Despite the crime,
Despite the trial,
Aortic verbal canals;
I see myself on a gallow,
Letters drip from
My incontestable teeth
Through to a rubric,
Through to this
Indestructible
Woodland stream.

For that, in my dreams,
To all intents and purposes,
Is how the robin dyed
His breast in reds,
And how nemesis
Accounted, yes,
For a very baffled hubris.

Letters From A Misanthropist



If I laid stock-still
Through quietest nights
On my side
Would all
My naked thoughts
Fall out?

An earthquake of pain
Reverberates
In my tectonic mind.

In a dream
Through gritted teeth
And a sense of purpose
I did not own,
I wrote letters
To my son
And also everyone;
Letters of apology,
Letters singed by the sun.
So little left to inspire,
I decided to enquire
Into my mind and
Write down names
Of several men I admired,
To prove a value
More for my son
Than myself,
Than anything else.

Alphabetically
This dream-missive listed:
Alex Jeffries, for persistence,
Colin Powell, for cross-party respect,
Denis Mukwege, for making a difference,
Despite the circumstances;
François Villon, balking against
The injustices of
The See of Orléans;
Mr John Wheatley,
Same reason as Denis’s,
Only a different season
And in a different respect;
Louis Bleriot for his determination
In all matters aviation
And in love;
Richard Ratcliffe for his hunger striking
For a principle, for his wife;
Several Russian mid-nineteenth
Century poets, ditto Chilean,
Ditto Chinese and Japanese
And European and American
From predominantly before
1980 or maybe 1984.

I poured a molten moth
Back up into my skull
Through my broken
Ethmoid bone,
And woke up, exhausted,
In a sweat I must confess,
And wondering how
I had evolved
Through experience
Into this
Misanthropist.