A verb or noun
quite like this one.
The time, please.
A class of sharpening
plotting a lunchtime
under the cover
of French grammar.
for a word plucked
from the bible-paper-thin
that open on
another world entirely
but refuse to navigate
A verb in parallel
and the words of
ask me and I won’t say no.
Ouvre la fenetre.
At the revisionist’s tea-party
we are treated to the crumbs from the tablecloth
War is an onslaught of terrible mathematics.
Full-page diagrams in pastel shades formulate how many
former-students sleep in a foreign field that is forever –
sculptors forge a new iron repose of the tourist age
to be mass-produced for the national mantelpiece
out of iron railings and working-class saucepans.
The miner’s strike becomes a picnic with the police
on the village green, illustrated by time-lapse pictures
of coniferous coal lurking subterranean in a virgin seam.
Maps become useless.
Someone tows the whole collection of British Isles
further out into the Atlantic and cuts it adrift.
Not a folly, but rather a garden lodge,
a broken shell commanding a bare approach.
Restored ornamental canals for pleasure-boating,
stocked with fictitious fish and the maze
of allegorical raspberry sacramental roses
as red reminders – only accidentally revealed
once in aerial ordnance by an enemy
Tresham would not have comprehended.
Rafters rudely asset-stripped, tools downed
and hinges left awaiting doors against draughts,
crests of bleared lichen and historical graffiti,
crows signalling blackly and alighting down
through roofless chambers, oblivious
to trysts of fate, suspiciously worn seclusion,
hearths never blackened with life where
warming never came quite like a warning,
a son’s head for Northampton’s town gate.
The roof he left for her was
a blue, long sky.
Copyright © Jane Commane, 2010