An Exhumation

There were traces of me,
Some burnt vestiges
Found under mulch,
Detritus in strata, then debris.

I didn’t look very much like me,
But the finders were keepers
And they all disagreed.
They could have just left

The stagnant shell of myself
Where I’d slept all those years;
My mouth full of moss, and behind
My green eyes, fern-flooded ears.

After their initial shock
Discovering me in those woods
For a while I wondered
If they could return,

Yet they did, armed with candles
And prayers and books
With scripts I’d unlearned since
There’s nothing to read

With an ego interred.
After they repatriated me
Within the appropriate earth,
All the towns seemed different,

New, not shiny or imbued
With ores, nor for once subdued
By saddening flags and blankets,
Whose seven colours draped

And sometimes secured
Our feelings, through sombre times,
Thankless times, where we found
The end of heaven.

Canto Dell’aragosta

They used to eat lobsters here,
Before beginning the end of ends;
In restaurants, on promenades or piers
Which have since all disappeared –
Overlooking the Papal Bay of Scampi
Patés of blue tomalley.

Fresh from the sea, picked from a pot,
Seasoned with salt for a rich polyglot;
Suspended in freezers, icy blocks,
They tied the pincers, joined the dots;
As he played with his ring
He lied to his wife that his lover had gone.

A lobster with one claw or less is named
A Cull, in Maine and the eastern seaboard.
The male transfers sperm through its legs,
The red is the red of the roe;
We breathe through our gills
Through the gaps in our toes.

Once we have extinguished all nature,
Where will dharma and karma take us?
My hands are changing before me,
My body will soon have its telson.
I will adapt to a life on dark distant beds,
Before I am speared, for fatter men fed.

Ancorato

Il mare mi ha interiorizzato;
Proprio come pensavo di essere stato rimosso
Ho ingoiato la sua ubiquità blu.

Questa tristezza incorruttibile,
Anti-materia, causa di elettricità statica,
La mia antitesi innaturale completata,

Lanciò la sua spessa corda dal ponte
E si è ancorata a me.
Mi trovavo su una banchina grigia

E anche se le persone passavano
Tutto quello che potevano vedere era ancora un uomo di riserva,
Prima che si rivolgessero ai caffè.

Tutti i molluschi sono silenziosi
Quando uno scrittore non può guardare i suoi strumenti
Non può guardare alla sua vita abbondante.

Plot Thickens

Laid myself across the tracks,
Liked the feeling of not coming back;
Vibrations down the line.

Engineering of my fate,
Wheels through ribs I’d lately wait,
But then, yes, you found me.

I’d wait, love, if I could,
Until you had unhooded my blood,
But the train is surely resounding.

I am terrible with knots.
The world is full of circles;
Yet only straight to a plot.

Mirror Image

I became an image of me.
Too late, I wondered
Where my true self should be.
All this time squandered
In the mirror image of me.

I cried out once, inside my love,
The replica baffled my sounds;
So, hidden in hollows
I caused all the sorrows,
Treading his unhallowed ground.

Look at the colours they said
Look at these bones so profound.
They could not have known
If I am kind, to suppose,
Of how I remained below ground.

An Unrestarted Heart

This road is the road of my death.
I stood motionless in its lucid waters
Where parallel to the ocean

I speared a neon fish.
He admonished me with a fossilising
Shock of ages, waged in his eyes

Which were tiny, glaucous opals.
He once danced and shone
In shoals unknowable as stars.

I am opposed to my own taxidermy.
Standing in the sea leaves me thirsty.
The sky is perforated by jars

For storing a catch which is ours.
Lobsters, swordfish, octopus hearts,
Once the muscle is stopped

It’s almost impossible to restart.
I witnessed it only once, as a boy,
And mythology claimed it for herself.

How far we had journeyed.
I envisioned my existence
With gulls and oppressive seasalt air

Which stripped the elders of teeth
And their ability to remain human,
Their silence as fragile as chalk,

And it corroded all moments
And customs, the colours of
Spring summoned in my lover’s hair,

The jigs of tradition around
A pole each townsmen bore
To the beach with such gravitas

Commensurate only to their souls;
The saline air froze time,
Woven into their hair, banded

Together like a comet’s tail,
Like the spawn of the golden eels
Which are reeled in by fishermen

With the sun tattooed into
Their ganseys. I too will be spry
And fry, live and die,

There is nothing starker.
For now, I arrive and I cry
Behind my steering wheel,

A harpoon through my hope,
Ego skewered by a dart
Outside an unlit supermarket.