David Berridge

 

Very Thin Ice

In the desert what is
The first thing you
Have to think of

Students the verdict
Comes nothing is
There really a here

 

There are four greens
One is a green you
Look at all your life

Instead of the teacher
Huge autumn leaves

 

Looked at individually
Students are not
Settled in explaining

The desert nothing
Obsesses over

 

 

We disliked this small town, changed it
By juxtaposing it with another. The explanation
In the style of a military performance
But we found it enabled gestures
Tore page or canvas. To be born
In the intention was to contemplate
Leaving and returning the city

There was a limit to the effects of
Juxtaposition. New arrivals all had perfect
Teeth. Just because we went
To the neighbouring town, gap-toothed
Clamouring for fillings

Was not to make it worthwhile, beans
Try square after square

In the town of intention we hide
In the town of forced calm our

Passivity revealed as a sham we

Betrayal in the night thought bound

By the question where to live not

On the ticket a field a hedge a

Human scale wood pigeon


He was not at home so I had tea
With many of his favourite maxims

Difficult for such a meeting
Showers of frogs we make a space
In which to work between finger
Tips a micro-climate the space

Of an ice cream cone surely
Cannot mean subsistence

Two hands reached friends
Instead of love and work

Circle, triangle, square

 

 

 

Is not stacking chairs. Impossible, then
To believe this totally. The world seems flat
Our days appear to depend on it. Only leaves
Huge autumn leaves live up to the promise
Are included directly not as influence
But as themselves alongside papers

Preferred for fixity of colour. Leaves 
Have many papers in themselves that
To the opaqueness of a single person
Talking fast. A shocking red season
Ends. In the distance a chair stack falls

 

This coal it
Fills our mouths

At the moment
Of writing

Scares those
Coming back

To score us
For industry

A love gives
Equal priority

To the tree
Behind me

 

 

David Berridge lives in London. Poems and sequences can be found in Shearsman, Liminal Pleasures, Poetry Salzburg Review and online in Fascicle, Great Works and Shadow Train. A chapbook Nationality Test, published as part of the 2007 dusi/e-chap kollectiv, can be downloaded at dusie.org.

 

 

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