from Risk Assessment

Becalmed

Becalmed and somewhat adrift   staining air for all time
listening doesn't begin pink   ears straining such to hear
years waning    turning grey flecks infecting blue sky shifting
its scenery across the roofs   last evening thoughts flickering

song thunders far away   deep throat of winter's end
ionised particles of discourse   living out each other's lives
luring people into my world   focussed to a spot on
my pin-pricked retina   still feels like tears

slowed down to rapid   vertical rain covering the day
with English Pastoral Regret   autumn come early again
Indian summer no show   rolling over the treetops
like a hymn sheet   small unreadable print

reaches you as curling fractals as two decades engulf me
concepts drain out of an answer the island its sand
what we weather changes our psyche
strolling players   my inhibitions   tender life

 

Fortunate Implausibilities


Fortunate implausibilities remembered   as sackfuls of mania tipped
into the furnace   madness burns the media skin away
implausible weekend supplements   damning the landscape
with faint rain   plausible reasons a feint

spoken in your own voice   we're dancing and
we're each writing a line   defiant before ourselves wondering
how the fire started   the more we quiver in
the fumes the more we   find and expose impossible

moments and manouevres   tiny contact prints of
joyless blowjobs    petrified orgies moments sold on street corners
to convince us we're real   cartwheeling categories of obsession
the necromancy of nomenclature   dead reckoning done

all such memories merge into none   museums of the skylark
giving useful skills to humans content with their routines
the dropping summer sun bleeds into the sea-horizon
dreadnought   furnace   firearms   distance   dark


Rupert Loydell is the Managing Editor of StridePublications, Editor of Stride magazine, Reviews Editor of Orbis, Associate Editor of Avocado magazine and a regular contributor of articles and reviews to Tangents magazine. During 2003-2004 he was a Royal Literary Fund Project Fellow, working in Exeter schools, following a RLF Fellowship at Bath University. In 2004-2005 he is a RLF Fellow at Warwick University and Poet in Residence at Sherborne School. He lives in Exeter, Devon with his wife and two daughters. Recent publications include A Conference of Voices, The Museum of Light and Endlessly Divisible, and four collaborative works.

Robert Sheppard has published a number of books from his long project Twentieth Century Blues, including Empty Diaries (Stride Books, 1998) and Tin Pan Arcadia (Salt, 2005). He has previously collaborated with Patricia Farrell, Scott Thurston and Bob Cobbing. The editor of Pages:www.robertsheppard.blogspot.com.