BEFORE

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BEFORE

my poem
wants to get
to know you

my poem
want to
sound you out

all your music
the notes, the chords,
scales,
harmonies, melodies,
quavers,
semi-quavers

listen to the whole symphony
as the orchestra
embraces me

sweeps me away, lifts me
so high
so
much part of
our one,
all too imperfect,
resounding song

my
poem

wants to get to sound you out
more than it ever did before

GODS INC.

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GODS INC.

the gods
(herewith including the goddesses
both good and unruly)

gave him a head-start
set him
on track

put all us mere mortals
so far beneath him

and so
considering us so far beneath him
out of kilter with that realm of magic,
haunt of heroes

drove us to madness
trampled us down into
the soft soil

telling himself
this is what one does and
has to do when aspiring to be immortal

this is all
that has to be sacrifice, eschewed,
ripped out of the text
of that great book
deleted
from its every
single page

LEVEL (MET DIE GRAVEL)

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LEVEL (MET DIE GRAVEL)

went out and purchased for myself
an exquisite tool for
livelying up myself
as Mr Marley well might have
sung
definitive device for
sexual self-sprucing

which on closer inspection,
checking the label, told me it
was proudly
“not made in Sputh Africa”
which might possibly explain
why the instructions
written in the most non-standard
English were so
moerse confusing

now I am open to linguistic complexity
as the next man (whatever his race
or creed or sexual orientation)

but when you
have urgent beyond urgent
needs of a deeply personal nature

it’s more than the poetry
that gets lost
in translation

and
the true cosmic connection, power
pleasure of a singularity, way beyond
flash of a supernova
that has to
be forgone

leaving you ambling through life,
at the same level awful level
(met die gravel)
your whole spectrum of being as
pure electromagnetic radiance
quark gone quack
drooped into
non-existence

note: “level met die gravel”: South African slang expression mixing Afrikaans and English, originating in the Western Cape

VAR

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VAR

let’s go to VAR

see if I committed
any foul language
need
to get penalized

see if
every decision taken
aesthetic choice made
was clear
and obvious
(as the philosopher did
put it: clear
and distinct idea)

if not
if there is any doubt
about it
just blow your whistle
your big, fat whistle

call for the screen,
that big, fat (yet
wafer-thin) screen

we can have no doubt
here, second-guessing, thing
open to interpretation

thing
open to
interpretation

would that then
be a pun, or the very
ludic essence
of
false nine
as metaphor?

MORNING STAR

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MORNING STAR

opened my eyes
but you had
disappeared

one moment here,
the next, gone

or so I thought
until I saw the room
bathed in light, suffused
in gold
my lover
in her natural goddess form,
divine shape
not for normal, mortal eyes,

but either
being half-blind or
being a sort-of poet, clear my Morning
Evening Star
showing her true self by
teasing, taunting,
special dispensation

the visual spectrum destined sadly to
be a barrier between us by
virtue of the distance
between our natures

but not the sense of
touch
such a beautiful leveler, that
best of faculties

her mouth her lips her fingers
teaching me how
this
all this
to transcend

MANY TIMES BEFORE

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MANY TIMES BEFORE

Have aircrashed myself
many times before

treat my whole life
as a simulator

lost count
of how often
been shot down flying
over your bed, skimming
your spread out body
preparing
for landing
all systems go
undercarriage lowered

so much flak
as if our difference
breaking. law
of the cosmos
a matter of such gravity,
apocalyptic concern

that what so
polar in difference
so deeply attract

each
conjunction
hastening the end of
a world fixed
in opposition
earth to
ground our air
water to
quench our fire

and yet this
is the magnetism
no
force in the Universe dare
try to deflect

ESCAPE

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ESCAPE
“now wouldn’t that be sweet?”
Gwen Stefani

the puppets and the
Muppets have escaped

are making their way
down to the zoo

they are looking for photo-opportunities
how cool it will be
to be captured on camera
riding a lion
or a tiger
how could anything
be as wild, more free?

or to
share a few jokes
with the laughing – hyenas
(stand up comedy so
huge these days)

or bounce up and down
at the children’s
Inflatable castle

totally bold in their defiance
of gravity
their shrieks
of delight so squeaky high-
pitched it’s
like they’ve
been breathing in helium

the very gas
that the Sun uses to
keep that fire burning
perfect for a
ten billion year
nuclear flame

OUTSIDE

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OUTSIDE

gave my talk on
linguistic subversion
and violence in poetry

which he
rubbished in the space
afforded comments
from the floor

for what
do these critics know
their incursion into the text
reeling of
deus ex machina?

posing as the supreme
authority
on writing
on all things literary

so I invited him to
follow me
into the car park
where we might
continue this discussion

in the light
of some tired old
Platonic absolutes

and that ancient, Eastern wisdom
you see
in the Bruce Lee flicks