Wednesday, 7 July 2021

Cthulhus sir! Thousands of them!


As a Private Eye cartoonist appears to have caught up with me at last on this one, it's worth revisiting this collage, first posted on SLAG's blog 23 November 2010. Is it worse that the catching up took so long, or that it happened at all?

Friday, 4 June 2021

Ramesside: Life on the Street


for Mohsen Elbelasy and Ghadah Kamal Ahmed


Block the waterways to the funerary wedding processions

As they march the powdered fascists

Through the streets


Stolen sandtraps dumped by the roadside,

Cloth masks damped onto new layers of skin

Spontaneous combustion of the face,

Fired from the hair down

In the dancing of Burnt Lydia


The New Kingdom must fall,

Ramesside revenge porn

From the Elders elsewhere.


The desiccated head is speaking,

Its aching teeth bursting,

With desalination, a mouthful of tobacco,

A spoon for the brain

And a testicle sewn back on,

A crocodile with its legs reversed,

This skeleton model of itself

In the tombs of the bulls.


Moss-fingered where the hoopoe’s sandbank

Is washed up in silt,

The chough-billed clang and clamour

As the filthiest birds probe the dirt.


Bury the iron caskets

In their cement lagoon,

Padlocked gravel goods

– The sleeping goats,

A dancing bee-bull

In hives of bulls

Seeking a queen.


Wash away the walls of this house,

Black silt fingers

Beckon from the reedbeds,

From the black-slit apron,

To a town that is no longer there.


A sandal bird-scarer

The exploded boot

Discarded of the gods,

And ducks fly as portents.

Saturday, 24 April 2021

Witness Protection


i.m. John Armstrong


The sound of horsehooves on the stair carpet

Rustling winds as a man climbs over an open gate


The identifiable mystery man

The stranger you know

Seated in his stained gilt glassware

Booming away awawy awaay aaaawwy awa ayyy wa

Declaiming in Chinese Greek he does not know,

The language of the stage


A samurai sword through parts of a suit

Legs and limbs lie loose and lost

Far below the watcher’s gaze,

The short-foot colour of impatient attention

Turns anemone-handed cartwheels

While synchronised disagreement pendulum ticks each nod

Towards its own synthesis,

Aufheben whether you will or not


Tremulous parakeet creaks

As a mustard gaudy stone head

Shakes its painted hermit-crab fringe,

Staring out

Over three women in trenches

Who dig monument tributes

Of green-sided lizard raven flowers

And canopies of wine