V. 82

“All this usury really fucks
me up” he said to the boat guard.
“It makes me itch? You understand?
“When I was in that cage, oh yeah

“I could feel it crawling on me
like ideograms.” The guard smiles.
Unstuck in time, he has one task.
He’s met a million like this –

bad money driving out the good.
“Hey there fella, could you get me
water?” How easy to just leave.
But the aesthetic demanded

a more apposite fate. The guy
held the glass and slurped, with a grin.
“I can’t believe I did it, wow
“I’m finally getting out. Heh

“I really fooled those old suckers
“worthless clots who couldn’t read me
“given half a year and the books
“I cut up.” You’re very strange, Pound

said the guard, later, down the path.
When the poet tried to salute,
the visitor grasped his daft hand
and firmly held it down. Justice.

*

The apparition of these blood spots on the path:
Petals on a wet, black, bough.

The National Express

i

Hurling through the misted landscape –
while Christian voices, here and there pray
like whispers of torque and warm rubber

ii

Buffeted by frosty wind in the night
snow erases the web of the tarmac
but the national anthem plays – deathless
rousing scraps of grey paper to stand

iii

Shadow eats the roads of the world