Sunday, 5 June 2011

Intimate City

The blood wings of the dusk
Unwrap on clouds of regal purple
And its fruit flashes peek
Between unruffled branches.
She sits exhausted in the umbrageous hush
Legs twisted, her boots touching,
Leather upon leather,
And her elephant ivory neck fresh
Under red flocks
Resting on her shoulder like
October petals.


It rained all day.
Such percussive confidence.
A damp, cloggy wool clotted the sky.

Off Tottenham Court Road
Above the record shops and burger places
And the air-dried street,
There is a pungent cloud of excited pink,
Proud against a spirited blue,
The awakening colours of Shangri-la,
The sky is the Buddha's belly.
This outburst masks the traffic's fuss,
And like a sacred word it reveals itself
To oblivious tourists, proles and alcoholics
Who see nothing but fox-shadows.


At the Cafe Metro and Electric Ballroom
The skanks and bints track the piss-wet tarmac.
Gaunt couples with oiled heads
Hide in each others' fondles.
The pavement is laced
With fag grease and paper-shit,
Sirens whistle in violence
Through the human flood.
The air's metallic perfume
Mixes with sweet leaf poison
And from the cars and bars
Boosts a music failing to mimic
From the trucks and the buses
A halogen luster smears like finger-paints
Over the moisture of the night.
A soupy swill from the fried chicken shop
Spills towards the drain, on a street
Liquored damp with muck and chilli sauce.

Three in the morning and
London breathes in bulbous breaths.
A cold, aural glow - silence, amplified.
The pregnant current betrays the
Predatory groans of jungle interchange,
The collaborative voice
Of infinite, exhausted narrative.
A cross-wire, insect silk
Of the same recursive, overlapping


There are times when even the wind can't
Get between us.
When the sanctity of death is our shared space
And the city's glitter our palette.
But then there are times when even Eden's trumpet
Dies on your ears, and your beauty becomes a fortress.
Our art forks, like a leaf spine,
And your heart's lenses become spikes of glass.

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