We are conditioned to stay blinkered to the distress
of those we only let inside to mop.
We pretend that they are used to poverty
and so aren’t bothered how the cards are stacked
against their having the security
our lives rely on. We let systems slide
the door shut on the little people’s dreams
and tell ourselves things aren’t so bad at all.
We remain in blissful ignorance of the mess
we sink into, as long as we’re on top
of others who sink first, and we don’t see
that it’s us, the middle people, who are backed
up next against the wall. We think we’re free.
We have free speech, because, to those inside
the halls of power, giving free speech seems
a trifle while they set us up to fall.
In the fair land between the Canadians and old Mexico
The inhabitants forget they’re Americans and regress into tribes.
They follow false shamans wherever they’re told they should go.
They elect whom they’re told to and turn a blind eye to the bribes
And crimes against reason and decency. Soon they don’t know
That they once were united. Mutual loathing divides
What was yesterday still a vibrant democracy
Into tribes with two flags: an ‘R’ and an equally loud ‘D’.
They camped for the night on the porous edge of Real,
upstream as far as possible from Sad.
They watched the lights go out, watched space congeal.
‘Can it really do that?’ asked someone who had
taken science courses. They watched goblins steal
both Joy and Meaning, leaving only Bad
in their picnic hampers where they’d thought they’d kept
enough sustenance. They suffered, then they slept.
I wanted the last sentence to be ‘They suffered. No one slept’ denoting vigilance and resistance, but their eventually forgetting and giving up seemed sadly more likely.
The gurnards engage me in quiet conversation.
My surprise that I am breathing under water
gives way to wonder, first, that fish can talk
and, secondly, to their accent: Brummie bubbles.
A phantom Bull Ring! Fancy, at these fathoms.
I’ve been down so long that ‘up’ is an abstraction.
A basking shark, from Bristol by its vowels,
backs off when I recite the Nicene Creed.
I did not know I knew it, and I don’t.
The words flow from a channel that is other
to the one I’ve so far thought of as my mind.
This area of asphalt that the gurnards
patrol, they tell me, is a carriage way
laid down when Britain rose above the waves.
A bit of pre nostalgia for after Greenland’s ice slips into the seas.
When WeenGon, a god of lost socks and found chances, is in free mode, he varies in size according to the number of people who at that moment believe in him. One inch tall for every million believers. On holy days and during natural disasters he is often five metres tall (200 inches). He can also switch to lock mode maintaining any height in the range of believers so far.
Weengon, a god of lost socks and found chances,
took part in after-dinner conversation
with squirrels – two grey, one white – and a senile possum
who grinned at everything to appear wise
They played a round of futures-reminiscing,
it’s a fun game if some players are divine,
until WeenGon raised his hand and took a call.
‘I’m needed,’ WeenGon said. He waved and left.
The marsupial and the rodents saw blue space
where WeenGon had been. They forgot him and they slept.
WeenGon hurried, which meant he travelled on at godspeed
arriving before he’d left the dinner party.
He brushed his hair and watched the cavalcade.
‘Which limousine?’ He asked. His caller answered.
WeenGon transformed into a blip of errant lightning.
He burned through the panzered side of the big car.
He sat on the seat beside the Serious Person.
‘Hi,’ he said. ‘I’m WeenGon. We have to talk.’
He had a scents-of-porpoise air about him,
not fishy, really, more at like detention
halls at schools that did not have a gym.
His walk was awkward, as if he was wrenching
his way through water known for salt retention.
A Dead Sea dolphin that had been seconded
to shore duty to dry out? The last enthroned id
from Freudian literature? That would be strange.
Stranger far is why we’d left the throne lid
up, and let him loose to stride our home range.