Pebble

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Sitting inside
one of the

graffitied wooden
shelters on

Hove seafront
beside the

peeling green
and brown

paint with
the empty

lager can set
against the

precise horizon
of the railings,

approaching rain
visible as

a greyish membrane
connecting clouds

to the sea.
An unanticipated

sense of
love animates

my perception
of the frothy sound

of toing and
froing waves and

the smell of
stale human piss

that pervades
the shelter.

I notice
a seagull

as it
flutters upwards

carrying a pebble
in its bill

and lets the stone
drop back

down onto
the beach.

It has
some reason

for doing this
as it repeats

the action.

 

August

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Augustus, the Divine, the Fortunate One,

Final surviver of the civil wars,

Last body left upright, he did a lot of building,

Created a marble simulacrum of himself.

 

The squatter, cross-legged, patient,

Behind her table-cloth of amulets,

Counts change from a velvet bag into

The palm of her hand; the ambergris of potions,

 

Murex and belladonna, washed from the Tyrian

Planisphere; the occult gear-wheels, the pathways through

To the different levels of Kabbalic illumination,

Represented in the symmetries of Tarot cards, the solar signs

 

Of the hanged man with a halo upside-down,

The tie-dyed circles in the breeze like purple flags;

There is the scent of lavender sprigs, and the raw smell

From bins in alleyways that back up restaurants

 

And sticky bars. How we wake, drenched in lilac,

Reeking of petrol, turning over a pillow in the night.

 

An Example

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For example:
the wind, making its changes
beyond the glass of the window

and a couple of voices in the wind
of people walking up the hill
below my block of flats

and I can hear words being said
but I can’t hear what
those word consist of

as they’re caught up
and jerked into different shapes
in the undivided continuation,

like the shapes sheets make
as they tug against their pegs
from the bending line.