I’ve been reading Hazlitt,
Raul Vaneigem, Kim Philby,
and John Fowles.
I’m not sure if the latter is
Alive or dead,
But to me, it doesn’t matter.
His views about everything are made clear
In the Aristos.
It’s not as if I have regular conversations
With Slavoj Zizek, Alain De Botton
Or Leonard Cohen
And they are all, at time of writing,
And that’s the point I suppose,
All the interesting people are known and remembered
For what they they create, say or enable
Rather than how tall they are,
What sexual preference they have,
Or the colour of their hair.
There are people I know on Facebook and Tumblr
Internet social media sites
(I put that in for posterity)
That I will never meet.
Someone, Somewhere, Somewhen,
Might be reading this now or then
And I’ll not know.
I may be dead or alive
But it’s unimportant as
They would have read more of what I have to say
And know more about me
Than my family or neighbours
In Camden Town, where I live.
In fact, these poems and pictures
Are “Me” to most of you,
And you are not wrong.
St Vincent of the Oils
I am talking to the dead again
Who are talking to the living,
Just as some of those swirling stars
Were winking at Van Gogh
From beyond their own black hole.
Thanks to you,
A man will always be walking
The road to Tarascon,
But never really leaving.
He doesn’t get anywhere
But he doesn’t get nowhere either.
You never got a favourable hand,
But you used them well.
I mean, who in Arles would have thought
That you, the Absinthe sodden outcast,
The stinking brothel creeper,
Would be viewed a Saint,
Expressing the terrible passions of humanity
In thick masculine daubs of blood red and bottle green,
Under citron lights swirling
In the cafe of the night?
The reaper in the cornfield did not scythe down the artist,
His brushes wave like two fingers from the grave.
Vincent, you have granted a thousand painters and poets
(of variable ability)
The belief that there could be a better life after death.
Sometimes, when the sun is shining and the birds, singing
It seems almost romantic.
We plant our work like sunflower seeds
On these mornings
When my ears wake up
minutes before my eyes,
I hear perhaps
The feathered whirr of
A pigeons wing,
Working mens voices,
And I think that I am there
In that flat above
But the Factory
The Pantry now,
A place of ostentatious chic simplicity
Not metal work.
Someone orders lamb
And youth, with all it’s dreams
If God is the word then
The word is God.
The stars were not the stars
Until they were called the stars
The pig was not the pig
Until it was called the pig and
The pig was not food
Until someone called it bacon.
Innocent people were not collateral damage
Until a US spokesman called them collateral damage.
Back in paris,
Duchamp had said
This is not a urinal
It is a sculpture.
Over in Brussels
This is not a pipe,
It’s a painting.
Perhaps it should be up to you,
Is this a piece of pixelated paper
or is it a poem?