The Rival

My art is fuel for my self,
It’s all about survival;
Watering plants in a drought,
Mundanity’s suddenly vital.

I wanted a different existence,
To find my higher rival;
Meanwhile art is all I’ve got
Before touching down on arrival.

Later, above that lofty shelf
Too late the dim apostasy!
Knowing I was safer below,
O art, protect my soul from me.

When a unicorn falls from the wall
Then we are all in trouble;
Until that day I’ll paint my bed,
And write beneath the rubble.

Soul’s End

Is this how the death of my Soul should feel?
Re-sending last elements before being sealed;
Carbon, Hydrogen, come what may,
Conglomerate siphoning, a shipping display,
I am in no hurry to leave this way.

All feeling from my legs and toes
Dissolved at first, and a final thought
Which wasn’t my own;
Silly now, of how all those who went before
Did not return to tell us more.

Walrus Tusk

Just because a stranger gives
Necessitates none taken;
Foolish misappropriations live,
Strung love from her engagements;
A non-thought, a mere non-touch,
Somewhere turned the quiet ages.

We are not chess pieces chained
To carved unmoving squares,
Whittled from a walrus tusk
Or teeth from Arctic whaling;
Like the Lewismen of Trondheim
In a trance, they’re biting their

Own cages in an everlasting
Curse behind curated explanations.
I’d wager strangers all moved on
While we chomped escutcheon’s bit,
And just because somewhere she lives
Does not mean we’ll elevate

Expectations which weren’t ours
To give, adore, and cherish.
For a soul on paper is not fed,
Conveyed both near and far,
With cables on the deep seabeds,
And pulleys in our hearts.

Foundry

These are men
Of the original furnaces,
Surrounded by sirens
And evolved machinery,
Overground miners
Of molten steel
Can feel unreal;
Hard hats, shifts,
Time cards and whistles,
Yellow painted railings,
Actors strutting
Like working class
Pennsylvanian
Rock stars on a
Stag night.
Billboards and pool tables,
An orthodoxy of
Beer bottles
And Pepsi adverts.
They wore tuxedos
In the evenings
And baseball caps
While you lay bleeding.
One of their colleagues
Lost a finger once
And a thumb,
But it was settled
Out of court.
What will we call stag nights
And hen nights
When there are no more
Of the extinguished
Smelting, fiery,
Delicate creatures,
And no more churches
For weddings,
And what would we name
A distant irreligious war
When you do not return;
Or should you do, then not
With the same fire
As you were founded with
Many years before.