Tag Archives: contemporary society

Fin de Siecle

Trailing in the wake of Lions,

Hyenas come to feast on the carcass

of someone else’s name;

Shattered windows,

Burned out cars,

Looted Stores,

Toppled statues;

Triumphant Vandal hordes

breaking the gates of Rome,

trampling its glories,

defecating on Temple steps;

Anarchy like lava

spewing from a volcano’s maw

shrouding the days

in its ashen nights

and its silence drowning our screams.

Void

On a day of

no particular significance,

where nothing especially

happened,

no report was made

no notes were taken,

nor behaviour observed;

the absence of animation

accumulated

throughout the day,

leaving public spaces uninhabited

the flora and fauna

undisturbed and unmolested;

Absence this your sting,

Emptiness this is your victory.

Little Richard

” A wop-boppa-loop-bop..”,

Cutting sharp

like a razor thro’ old silk,

your timbre broke

a thousand taboos

set racing a million heartbeats

beating along with,

your three minute records,

you were vinyl;

Long Tall Sally

lighting up the ether

like the fourth of July,

Tutti Frutti painting gaudy colors

on a monochrome radio dial;

you were engine of the sock-hop ball,

you were Rock

and Roll,

” a-wop-bam-boom!”

Metropolis

Stark geometric lines
intersecting clean marble
and steel;
horizonless concourses
deserted entrance halls,
empty corridors
vacant escalators
ascending,
descending
in relentless
progression;
Walls hyphenated
with reminders
to purchase,
to consume
bellowing mutely
into the void;
shimmering platform mirrors,
clipped automated announcements,
data screens streaming
their silent prophecies;
Inexorable arrivals
whooshing
and rumbling,
debouching into
the gleaming Now
of a glass-towered
morning amid its
awakening rage
there on
the bench
face down,
his skin again
punctured,
no-one.

Alien Nation : Alienation

We went into the Valley of Elah

looking for victory and reasons to carry on ,

when we got there those reasons had gone ;

they’d quietly slipped away

leaving us with nothing more to say ;

when we got back

we didn’t recognise ourselves ,

we looked at our faces in the mirror

that only showed someone else ;

all our words too had their meaning changed

for something that we couldn’t understand ,

and we who were born here

became strangers in our own land .

Metal Shavings

Each one individual
different from the last,
still spiral in shape
and glowing with colour,
but different
as if each seperate one
has its own vocation,
growing and glowing to
the peak of its form,
or jumping lemming-like
to an inevitable end,
before it has lived
nipped in the bud and then
crushed underfoot again and again;
Then the rebel piece
causes maximum disturbance
sticks to its creator
for another lease of life,
then lies on its back
backlash and then,
the tool hits the jump
and me jumping back,
to panic for a handle,
yet another false mistake
while the rebel fits to
its own metallic waste,
and I know he’s gone for good;
I wonder should I tell them
the science of their lives?
their ductile strength,
their malleability
or how less longer
they live in the heat,
or should I keep them
young in my own imagination,
where boredom is
the furthest place away?

(Martin Nicholson has asserted his authorial rights in this work)

Coffee Table

Giant,

glossy,

glamorous

coffee table magazines,

with those portraiture pictures

that capture those

” just so ” glances,

contemplative

meditative,

with that pristine air

of purposeful confidence,

of a knowing what lies ahead;

and the apparel just so,

the complexion just so,

hair,eyes,nose and teeth just so,

of shop window dummies

playing at being us.

Heckler & Koch

It’s gonna be a Heckler & Koch morning,

but i don’t know that yet as I get up at 4.30 a.m.

to use the toilet;

The hall light’s on and I notice the front door’s open,

wide open but I need the toilet first;

Minutes later appropriately attired I almost somnambulate

toward the wide open front door and the faces –

flecks of colour- in black black black camouflage;

It’s a Heckler & Koch morning alright,

Their voices instruct me to come out,

there they are strapped onto body armour,

their Heckler & Kochs:

who am I, who lives there,how many flats ?

I make it casual even conversational given the situation,

getting up and ready for work,

they say I should get back to my flat,

I do;

Time doesn’t flow,not much really,

I’m getting my breakfast ready,

they knock diplomatically on my flat door;

I cajole one of them to come in –

the rest of the squad is jackbooting

up to the other flats and I’m chatting and

giving what useful info I can ;

The scenario continues for about half an hour,

I hear them smashing the door to the empty flat next to mine:

It’s a Heckler & Koch morning in downtown Wakefield,

and I’ve had my breakfast and I depart for

my Heckler & Koch day at my Heckler & Koch job ,

the main entrance door to these 5 pokey apartments –

pied-a-terres-but without any metropolitan pretensions-

remains wide open until I close it respectfully behind me

and step out into the Heckler & Koch morning.

 

Author’s Footnote:

At around 4.30 a.m. Monday 26 November a heavily armed Police SWAT unit showed up at the address where I live; it turned out they had the wrong address.

 

Ciudad desierta ( Deserted City )

Mythic streets evaporate at dawn,

leaving only complacent memory

to recall imperfectly those scraps

and oddities of ephemera that

defy rational explanation;

a pristine franked letter posted

in Huddersfield 1841;several ornate

glass marbles that were a birthday

present to some Rhineland princeling;

the signature of Thomas Alva Edison

on a page awkwardly torn from a

Hotel register omitting its name,

the building itself demolished long ago;

a skeletal frame of a Penny Farthing

half buried amid the inconsequential

detritus of the communal refuse tip;

a yellowing poster of a once well known

brand of cough syrup,the discernible lines

of a now defunct city tram route;

And somewhere,the presence of an

inveterate aesthete and poet of civic

renown struggling to evoke a nostalgia

amongst those who had not read Borges

nor knew of his blindness.