An Anatomical Portrait of the Artist formerly Drunk on Shandy

I haven’t posted for (more than) a little while, so here is a poem I wrote for the most recent BCU Anthology.


Shall we for ever make new books, as apothecaries make new mixtures, by pouring out of one vessel into another? Are we forever to be twisting and untwisting the same rope? – Laurence Sterne.


Shall we-
Shall we dance?
Through the curtains that our kisses have outworn
To your beauty with a burning violin
With Leonard Cohen to the end of love?

One, two, three, forever?

First consider Pound’s binding principle,
Because though we may have read nothing new in ever,
There’s definitely money to be made here somewhere—
We should put together a proposal for the council
To take on that lucrative new recycling contract,
Or flip cheap property from bank foreclosure auctions,
Or else become involved in the manufacture of a revolutionary new drug,
Remaining one step ahead of Government regulation
And the University’s own guidance on plagiarism
To provide—for a price of course—a cure
For early onset cryptomnesia.

The key is not to pour your heart out
But to get a spare one cut
Keep it around your neck on a length of string
So you’ll never be without access to a liquor cabinet.

Are we forever to be decanting Shakespeare?
Was it the Immortal Bard who called for us
To twist again, like we did last summer?
I don’t remember much you know
It’s not only the old rope that’s unravelling
As we sit methodically pulling things apart,
But there’s money to be made here somewhere—
And a limited selection of goods
That can be purchased from the prison store.