Sunday, 26 January 2014


(nine variations on and for Simon Howard)


imaginary as imaginary
now as shrubbery
now & shrubbery
suburb & suburb


what is said
what will be is said
any will be secret
any the secret, slow the trudge
slow trudge


late afternoon
late the afternoon weather
the clearing weather clearing


mow the moon mow
burn the moon & burn
salve & salve


everyone prepares everyone to dance
prepares another to dance
time another strolled by
time the river strolled by the river


fixed clouds
fixed, moving, clouds
earth moving earth


where the moon is
where the blank moon is
the blank stars
the stars


with clouds
& with flowers
clouds & torn flowers
wing torn wing


to solidify and to solidify
songbirds and whispered songbirds
my whispered deletions
my deletions

Friday, 10 January 2014

from, The Apothegms: in chains

The Apothegm poems take a seed phrase and look for the same pattern in the rest of a text. This example uses 'The Social Contract' by Jean-Jacque Rousseau and the famous phrase at its start, 'Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains'. But in this case I have reversed the order and the phrase appears as the last line of the poem.

in matters
in livery
in need
in imposing
in Persia
in countries
in Macedon
in China
in availing
in establishing
in performing
in extent
in quarrelling
in armies
in civilisation
in society
in viscera
in power
in dependence
in praise
in hopes
in anything
in full
in her
in manufactures
in search
in swiftness
in multiplying
in languages
in climbing
in considering
in life
in proceeding
in books
in your
in building
in having
in case
in attacking
in things
in proposing
in placing
in everything
in generalship
in most
in vogue
in like
in paradoxes
in subjection
in contempt
in vain
in speaking
in possession
in Homer
in turn
in duels
in judging
in abeyance
in votes
in addition
in whatever
in bringing
in inquiring
in explaining
in mind
in spite
in actuality
in practice
in Greece
in council
in Rome
in assembly
in any
in accordance
in either
in opposition
in dispute
in clothes
in tillage
in authority
in contrast
in consequence
in rank
in public
in some
in inverse
in execution
in proportion
in more
in his
in hand
in drawing
in attempting
in government
in each
in agreement
in respect
in Europe
in youth
in themselves
in all
in many
in every
in advance
in much
in security
in fulfilling
in relation
in chapters
in principle
in such
in reality
in these
in strength
in taking
in granting
in general
in changing
in man
in order
in fact
in particular
in one
in making
in place
in common
in giving
in concert
in question
in conformity
in nature
in itself
in war
in dungeons
in this
in that
in them
in slavery
in favour
in resuming
in chains