The chrisom is placed around my head. The midwife to charm me. The pastor to bless our family bed. Has the wheel turned in my favour? Is happiness foretold by the fortune-teller? My Catholic fingers in font-water. Ale in the alehouse makes better my humours. Poachers and apothecaries rest in the tavern. Drinking, adversities are briefly forgotten. Move the moon towards my sad rosary. Will the harvest heed us? How ought i to see?
Providence and promises haunt our village church. Spectre-eyed priests, in the pulpit, watch. Does the lantern, tonight, mourn our loss? As merry as Mary by the cross. Otherwise, there are street-acts to sorcer With contentment, almost, in the tricks of the conjurer. My lonely desires are as lonely as me. Merchants, elsewhere, mundanely make money. Mournful Hamlet phones the Samaritans. Have i my horoscope? Is this my talisman?
I am a peasant with peasant blood. My simple plough for prosperous earth. Drink a keg to life-long love. Then scatter my ashes in the pub.
“Next to mine own shippe I do most love That old “shippe” in Exon, a tavern in St. Martin’s Lane.” (Francis Drake, 1587)
Sir Francis Drake supped With sixteenth century swank As his naval ship-mates tottered with rum-tots On oaken floor-boards, walking the plank.
I wonder whether he boozed harder As his Elizabethan world view blurred; Head spinning, he spun the one about the Armada, Slurring the Spanish as his English words slurred.
A Very Important Pirate, he autographed beer-mats For West Country folk, his Exeter fans As in his favourite watering hole, he happily spat Making merry in Merry England.
Meanwhile, having had no success with the weaker vessel, His crew poured out of the tap-bar, lamenting Hello me Hearty! Having had their melancholic fill They set off to drown their Tudor sorrows at sea.
Hunchbacks give hunchback rides round la fontana dei matti as round the cloisters st francis goes batty talking to birds of the feathered variety.
You can easily vanish off the face of the earth where you’re lucky to be born with your date of birth; godfearers in umbria in unforeseen trouble get gobbled up by earthquake rubble.
Gargoyles at the churchside come a poor second in the village’s annual gurning contest to your neighbours, gap-toothed and goyaesque, pulling faces that knock spots off the rest.
From their hovel next door you hear one of them sneeze as rats race round forcing the working population to its knees; the whole continent in sepia, and a plague painting each town red you hang on to your dear ones, and bring out your dead.
tomorrow morning you’ll get; an e-mail in your mail-box a pigeon at your sill a letter through your letter-box a fax on your fax a memo on your desk an arrow to your tree an SMS on your mobile a brick through your window flowers at your door as overhead you’ll see a private plane with a banner trailing all with the same message; was our losing touch written in the stars?
Darkness is very black with eyes open or closed. 100 years after an attack where dead men marching wearily dozed.
You’re going to have to take that back or else there’ll be hell to pay! You’re going to have to take that back! It misfires and could blow your head off one day!
Ah, sod this for a game of soldiers. Let’s turn back! Let’s shine up our buttons for a parade and line up for the final push or massive big button whack! Kids, learn history by heart ‘cos memories fade.
Buoying up what should only be anchored on a seabed, launching horizon thoughts from a beachy head, polishing off planks running red in gallons on bloody Mary galleons, mutinying off bilious dream decks into wavy waters off Albion; a pirate seagull takes a selfie from a cliff ledge.
Out-of-breath knee-rug centenarians in their Sunday best blowing out as many candles as possible to show who’s the eldest, sudden street-sleepers rolling out nicotine-rolled mattresses, metal-detector treasure-hunting wanderers wondering where it’s at is; a hypochondriac pigeon twigs it and drops down dead on its chest.
Shuddering scaredy-cats fidgety-pecking bread-crumbs, cry-baby pram-pushing toddlers make-believing their mums perfect perchers on rain-dropping bunting over wet pavement stones, nesty fledgling prodigies playground-beaking on xylophones; an Olympic swift breaks the all-time record at 32 metres per second.
Up-in-the-branches and away-with-the-fairies for whatever it takes. a modest million-strong division of camouflaged ambushers awakes, budget-totting scrimpers’n’savers blowing it all in one fell swoop, flashy film producing flashers put away for a long time in a chicken coop; a skylarking starling in mirror-sunglasses sweepstakes.