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Friday, January 04, 2008


Abnormal service hereby somewhat resumed. Three brushes with the non-human, literally so in the first case, clipped from my reading over the festival of Spendgasm.

Clipping a black mare’s mane in Miriam Gamble’s This Man’s Town:

I too am afraid
of what is under there,
of the sharp, extreme breath of winter
that has come here
with the clipper blades,
that has turned
the mountains into sky kings,
and cut my skin
into rivulets.
Tomorrow we will dope her,
fix shackles
to her flailing legs.

Elective brainlessness in Sam Gardiner’s ‘Believe It’, from The Night Ships:

Trees are simply green things without thoughts
that stand in our way. Only by
becoming brainless ourselves can we understand them.
Same goes for olives, quasars, genes, love,
you name it. Don’t you wish that
worry wasn’t the highest form of imagination?
What matters is that nothing matters, except
that you keep your instruments keen, in
working order, ticking over and alert, ready
for when it happens. And it will.

Derek Mahon contemplates a fly, from Somewhere the Wave:

Once more the window and a furious fly
shifting position, niftier on the pane
than the slow liner or the tiny plane.
Dazzled by the sun, dazed by the rain,
today this frantic speck against the sky,
so desperate to get out in the open air
and cruise among the roses, starts to know
not all transparency is come and go.

Image by Bernadette Kiely, who illustrates Somewhere the Wave.

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