This is the age of guilt

This is the age of guilt
That never goes away
Every road sign proclaims it
It’s apparent every day

Every face in every photograph
Every image from the past
I looking at the age of guilt
Is looking at the age of guilt

You can’t forget the wrongs you do
There is no forgiveness
It appears before you day after day
It sits growling on your chest

You flick a switch and guilt comes on
As rich as a priests golden gown
To remind each one of what they did wrong
On a screen in every town

Every ones guilt no matter how small
Is recorded and never taken down
Every ones guilt no matter how small
Is recorded and never taken down

Love has many jars to choose from

Love has many jars to choose from
Containing many different things
I look up at the sky and ask
What jar do I get today?
This jar is nearly empty
This jar hasn’t been opened
This jar has only animal fat
This jar has sweet gold honey

Love has many jars to choose from
Stacked up in the larder
High up on the special shelf
Are the ones for which you have to try harder
Love do you favour kings only?
Love do you favour only beauty?
Love what have I done wrong?
And how have I failed in my duty?

Walking along this short English road

Walking along this short English road
Spiked with road signs and lamps

At the throw of a dice you miss a turn
At the change of a light you move forward

The face of the permitted speed limit sign
The bright yellow lines along the kerb

So many signs in so short a road
Cemented into the bloodless anaemic earth

And in a group of people travelling by
Organised by signs where no danger exists

Their heads shaped like circles and triangles
Their crowns that light up like streetlights

Their fingers pointing down the white lines
Their eyes connected to control rooms

The BBC news

To the idling along rich
The snow moon
Was big medicine

It did not dance
And it did not sing
On television

I watched the news lady as she
Shuffled her papers
Into squares

At the press of a button
The snow moon
Came walking onto screen

They preferred the snow moon
To all the news in China

The BBC news
Maybe they lack the funds
For up to the minute broadcasts

Maybe they are holograms
From the hard drive
Of the chancellor

For a long time
I watched the news
Piling up like snow

Contributing
To brain repeats
And more cups of tea


(As vaccinations go
This left me all aglow
I spent the afternoon
Grinning like a loon

Then as the evening fell
I drooped down
Into vaccine hell
Vaccine hell

My joints ached
My bones creaked
My thoughts quaked
My speech leaked

And I had to go to bed
As if I had the flu)

So why do I watch it?
There’s a kind of sanctity
About the BBC news studio

It’s like being present
At a crematorium
As the body is sent
Gliding into the flames

To the sound
Of a grinding church organ

Fish fingers

My mother worked on an airfield
At the end of world-war two
He watched the plane land in flame
Out of the bright, bright blue

I that good enough for you?
Hat more can I do?
Fly the plane that crashed
Burn to death at last?

The history of the war
I written in memories
That melt like bread and dripping
In the houses of the poor

I’m wondering about you
And I don’t know what to
There’ something sad about you
And there’s nothing I can do

Handle bars and handle holds
They put them everywhere
But I cannot find a handle hold on you

You’ve been born a long time
Please come from behind ?
But with a hook inside your egg
How can you escape from
What’s inside your head

You ran as fast as lightning
Like a bullet from a gun
And landed in the system
Without?

Your peeling skin is crying
Wanting to tell the truth
I think your heart is peeling
You’ve gone back to the doll’s house?

It’s only by remote control
That I found the strength
It’s only by coincidence
I got on your wavelength

It’s like to see a flower die
Please tell me why, tell me why?

You’ve got to respond
You’ve got to respond
Don’t hide in your self-pity
And respond
It’s the common strength of lovers
To respond

People, food
Who can trust them?
Packaged in cardboard

People in cheap packaging
Everywhere
Food that has no soul

In cardboard boxes
People and food
Manufactured mouthfuls

People are fish fingers
In boxes
Dusted with bread crumbs

There’s a great factory
On the earth
Manufacturing people

Bland white fish fingers
Mass production
Society is a factory

I am exhausted
I am cut out from a fish
A precise white coffin

I am exhausted
I am dead
I am a fish finger

Little button eyes
Pulled out
Little fish mouth
Removed

No tail, no fins
No nothing

I am exhausted
I am a white fish finger
In a freezer

It is the church
Of the middle class

With car tyres
Hung on the walls

The stained glass windows
Depict colourful advertisements

The priest
Delivers rich home cooking

In their minds
They want to serve

A country
That isn’t good enough

Where is God they say
He is editing a newspaper

They’re given free polish
For their souls

Apply this
To your appendix

Death
Is a life insurance contract

Life is
A renewable trauma

Sometimes I am in motion
Like a rock
Rolling down a mountain

The crash produces stars

My soul
As thin as cellophane
Comes close
To being recycled

I pick the shark teeth
Out of my ghost

I’m a rolling slag heap
Of tears and rocks

I am asleep in a storm
With a heart under six feet of snow

Lockdown
Is a new photo
Of humankind

An anatomy
For a student coroner

The living
Go dancing
In the abandoned house
Like sprats

In a lockdown
Photograph album
You know nobody
There are no faces

True distances
Appear as a pathway
For sleepwalkers

The common place
Is moving into
A new darkness

I have been wrong
Wrong with prophesy
Wrong ith words

Rip me open
And stuff me full of lightning

I have been wrong
Wrong on the phone
Wrong on the recording

Burn my body
Disinfect my soul

I have been wrong
Truth tells me so
I am wrong to be me
There is no room at the inn
For happiness

The world moves in a circle
On broken teeth

Who is alive?
Who is dead?

Who’s shop is empty
Who’s bed has not been slept in?

There are advantages to take
Shoes to fill

Sweep away the tears
Of your neighbours

And walk on the shoulders
Of ghosts

I got my garage hook
But I do not have a garage

There is a girl I love
But I do not have a marriage

You make me hard
You make me cold
You make me hard
You make me bold

And I’ll never be the person I once was

I had a friend
In a music box

With the sunken eyes
Of an Italian criminal
In a silent movie

Snowdrop

After the winter’s plague
Has visited every home;
Where the long night
Has seemed like a grave.

From the ice and dirt and stone
Of people’s failure
A snowdrop appears.

He didn’t think twice about it;
He was hardly able to acknowledge it;
Then he was illuminated.

The whole earth
Had seemed dead
For a long time –

Then the snowdrop appeared.

There’ an orphaned child

There’s an orphaned
Playful child
Within
That only wounds
Can free
When the blood is drained
The boy is free

There’s a musty smell
From his parents bedroom
That he does not like:
Worse than a grave
Is the bedroom of the living

There he discovers
A friend in a small music box
Its music is sweeter
Than the music on the radio
And it’s revolving ballerina
Is his first love

Awake too soon

The six o’clock dawn
Opening the sky
The breath of light
Turns dreams into roots
Rising from the sea of sleep
My soul is filled with leaves
My face comes to life
On the border of light
In the bright space
A song begins seeing
The bow of summer
Ploughs through rippling waves
I reach for a lifeline
But I sink back in its depth

Summer is a witness

Summer is a witness
In the earth
In the sky

Was there ever
A summer
Before today

How can you
Be sure
That the summer
Ever existed before

Why does the wood
Produce only leaves?
Why does the wood
Produce only woody fruit?
Why does the wood
Look so beautiful in summer
And so corpse like in winter?
Why does the wood
Produce just enough to feed the birds?
Why does the wood
Quibble with man?
Why does the winter
Shut it all down?

What’s to stop you
From turning blossom into fruit
Why are you waiting

Money has gone mad
It is the plastic
That destroys the earth

Scoop up some soil
In the palm of your hand
And plant a seed

A palm full of soil
Isn’t that wonderful?

The wild grapes
Are under pressure
Little voices
Inside each one
Cries help

If the rain
Comes early
They are glad

In a future sky
There is a crushing
There are baskets
Filled with red

Mourn them now
Tell them
You’re sorry

Tell them
It’s not too late

Politics drives forward

Politics drives forwards
In slow motion
Through all that we build
Taking time to bury
What grows from the garden

Some kind of shadow
In man
Some kind of answer
To his godlessness
Some kind of carrier
Of the nations
Into the lava of destiny

Politics drives forward
Over every structure
Over every natural plan
That comes to the mind
Of people
That form a line
Behind it
Like dead convicts
Stripped naked of life

Politics drives forward
The tractor
That drives thru the forest
The tank
That drives thru the buildings
With war and destruction
Politics drives on

And in the end
Its’ greatest achievement
Is to plant a flag on the moon


Politics in a normal world
Is choice
Between teams

Is building a team
Of indestructible power
This is its
Ultimate aim
This is its challenge

There was
The war to end all wars
But evil persisted
In the arms that had held guns
That had felt the vibration of rounds
That had saw the flowers of blood

It was the beginning, not the end
The end is yet to come