Gunter’s Strange Story

Bagshaw and Wood discovered him. – Bagshaw and Wood? Yes sir, the Solicitors. He was hiding in their sculpture garden … at the back of their office. Well, the secretary really, she was out there emptying the tea-pot down the drain because the electricity had been cut off when she accidentally disturbed a hidden wasps nest, she was stung several times before she got back inside to safety. She looked out through the cellar window to see this red-headed boy screaming for help as the wasps were all over him. The flower seller next door knew about these things, he turned his hose on them and they all fled leaving him writhing on the ground. I looked at him; he was the orphan boy who had gone missing last year from the convent in Wapping. Even now he wasn’t about to be so easily captured, gritting his teeth he jumped over the fence into old UFO’S garden. UFO? Yes sir, so-called because he had a run-in with a UFO one dark morning flying above Commercial Road. He was walking back from his night job in Shoreditch and it following him, early one morning. A bright red ball, he stopped and looked around and there it was behind him against the western sky, late one morning. It came nearer to him as he stood there. I woke up in my bed above the office, disturbed by something and I looked out of the window and there they were: bright red UFO and our man. Then I saw it vanish, quick as the click of a camera. Yea, this part of Commercial Road you know, strange things have happened, you know sir, yes sir. Once a gypsy came selling lavender sprigs down the road and around the back, he was hungry sir. No one would buy anything from him. The next night Gerry hit round the back with a parcel of bombs. The old pub was saved that’s all I care about. The secret police came after the word got out, that is, about the UFO. Proper interrogation, tied to a chair, they concluded me and ’im was barmy. Now, this red-headed boy appears in the garden again, next night he was seen in a neighbour’s garden late at night, then another neighbour and another, police were called. Nobody could catch him. Then he seemed to be in two gardens at once, then the whole side of our street saw him, then … one strange night he appeared in everybody’s garden at once, staring at everyone staring back, then all of ‘em vanished as quick as the click of a camera.
The local reporter came round at least, but he wasn’t the real one. He questioned me. Ere who are you? I asked him. He winked at me, I was gone, and I left ‘im in the street. He disturbed me no end, this impersonator. Then Bagshaw of Bagshaw and Wood had a strange dream about me, sir, that I was an impersonator and that I was not who I said I was. But sir, honestly I am who I am. – I got sacked the next morning, they couldn’t take the chance of me not being me …

Stealing Dreams of You

Stealing dreams of you in the sunshine
Stealing dreams of you in the light
Stealing dreams of you in the evening
Stealing dreams of you in the night

A thief in your dreams I take them with me
To every lonely corner of the land
For though love is over I can’t get over
How my dreams have turned to sand?

Stealing dreams of you as you’re sleeping
As many as I can while you’re in bed
You’ve got more dreams than I’d imagined
While all my own dreams are dead

I love you in your dreams I take them with me
To every single corner of the land
If the dreams I have are yours
I know it makes you mad of course
But since you’re gone all my dreams have turned to sand

March 29

I Was, I Had, I Dreamt

I was born from an Ostrich egg in the desert
I was as a hairy Grand Canyon in the scales of justice
I flew like a rivulet of milk in outer space

I had the face of an Indian carved in granite
I had the body of a pregnant woman in contraction
I had the feet of the Colossus of Rhodes

I dreamt of darkness as a rubber glove turned inside out
I dreamt of light as a mechanical toy in a honeycomb
I dreamt of time as the air shrinking in a pyramid

27 march

Vulnerability

Like a lake scratched
By an overhanging tree
Vulnerability
That’s me.
All my life,
I’ve been
Suffering, this way.
Vulnerability;
Like a mirror,
broke,
Upon the street,
Beneath trampling feet.
I’m prone
to vulnerability
No, I’m not an immigrant,
Or an O.A.P.
No, I’m not a child,
But childlike maybe.
For all my life
I’ve felt this way,
With this wound
Slashed into my psyche.
All my life,
I’ve suffered dread
Like a blind man,
Or the near dead,
Who lie upon the bare earth,
To see,
To measure,
How close to death
They might be,
That’s me, surely,
I suffer from
vulnerability.