Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Developing a Conscience

Developing a conscience in old age,
I look back to a misspent youth, last year,
Running at high speed, but still in first gear,
Overextended on apprentice wage.
I seem to have become that white-haired sage
Who looks around the room and sees you here
In sable, soaking up the atmosphere,
And tells you stories about grief and rage.

I'm wearing felt pyjamas and a robe
To indicate my new delightful state;
You overdressed clowns may be tempting fate
But when I notice, in the flashing strobe,
The three bright golden earrings on each lobe,
Because I have a conscience now, I wait.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Blood Moon

I never wrote the pimple on your nose
Was redder than a fire truck. What I wrote
Was that you might receive an angry note
From groups of stinking drunkards who suppose
You stole yours from a man who came to blows
With a two-thirds-full bottle in his coat,
A ghost, two happy kangaroos, a stoat,
A fainting train conductor, and a rose.

It's very red, I did insist, quite red,
Magenta even, crimson, bright maroon,
The colour of what has been called "blood moon"
Or maybe simply blood. That's what I said,
And some day, many years after we're dead,
Your nose will be remembered, you baboon.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

The Moor Responds

I almost hit you, but I caught my fist
Just short of your proboscis, which was red
From being rubbed with tissues. What you said
Before that last remark propelled my wrist
Towards your puffy face, I had just missed
Until it was repeated, twice, by Fred
Who, though he said he wanted you twice dead,
Was true blue as a new-mined amethyst.

So you had said "Moor," certainly not "boor";
The word, though now archaic, may be fair,
But you can't be surprised it made me stare
And threaten action. You've been rather dour,
Your speech articulation has grown poor,
And you should be in bed. I'll put you there.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Meeting of Minds

I have believed false things. I do confess
I wished to see God's countenance, my face
To his face — I shan't rise above my place,
I will be satisfied and will not press.
I thought the truth would set me free, duress
Become my dearest friend, the empty space
Inside my forehead growing at a pace
That outstrips fear or joy. This was a guess.

I estimate that I have now believed
As many falsehoods as there are false stars,
As many wrong roads as there may be cars
To drive them, and I think I've been deceived
At least as often as I've been relieved
To learn I wasn't. We will meet in bars.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008


If everybody else is going, too,
Then I don't want to be there. Everyone
Hates me, and I hate them. This isn't fun,
Not really, even though I once passed through
A phase in which I said nice things to you.
I didn't mean them. If I had a gun
I'd use it, just to see the monsters run.
Yes, monsters, made of bits of silk and glue.

I'm not afraid to use the knife I've got:
A comfortable handle, long, sharp blade,
And shining rivets, almost ready-made
For my small hands. And this mood ring I bought
Tells me if I'm prepared to die or not.
The colour's orange, and I'm not afraid.