Secrets of a Scorpion Swallower

Now that I've got your attention we can begin.

Skimming the words he
         pulled paper towards him
                 & fumbled for a pen.

Astronomers need to make the most of what little light there is
                 & yet it's supposed to help, isn't it, the talking cure?
What happens if you introduce
             a melody with the left hand?
                        Sometimes we walk, sometimes we run.

This is what we look like when we dance in the dancing festival.
            Workers bash the trees with poles.
                      Suddenly it's raining black olives.

'Lovely to look at but super-intelligent & eerie', she said.

Is the ampersand the joker
in the typographical pack?
directs your thinking, doesn't it?
Dog barks, cock crows.

At this point the patient should
be mostly or entirely unclothed.
Tell me about the mussels in the streams of Alabama.

As we have seen, neurosis is self-
            estrangement felt as a state of imbalance.
                        Yet it wasn't just his voice it was the way
            he looked at her & suddenly, for reasons unclear to me,
                       we have to get off the bus.

                        If the word patchwork suggests floral quilted
                        bedspreads then you might like to think again.

'I'm going back to Afghanistan tomorrow and they're going to kill me'.

Our flavours will be deeper and more complex
and all the fat will dissipate. Surely?
                      Sometimes we walk, sometimes we run.
     Fresh snowfall continues to cause widespread disruption across the country.

         Of course this can be resolved peacefully if people put their minds to it
       yet life here is prescribed by a single room & a lack of suitable conversation.
          A page that is badly designed will be difficult & irritating to read.                       

The Melody is the Message

In a flash she's gone.
If I didn't know you better
I'd say you were working
in some kind of code.
    Arrests are imminent.

Their songs, explicit or otherwise,
often reveal the hardship of their existence.
We may need to talk to you again but in no
time at all he was three sheets to the wind.
   Do you know a safe route through the rapids?

Day after day after day
the bees just flew away. As the river narrows
more of its character is revealed.
How did you get my number?
   He's not political at all - he's just a man from the country.

Just look at the shine on that.
As the drenched earth is pulled downward
nothing can stand in its way.
Everyone needs a little notoriety.
   Finally, we make it out into relatively calm water.

Sand is easily blown by the wind & gets into everything.
Elsewhere, there may be wind-carved mountains
yet a general hypothesis is derived from
a series of clinical observations.
   Fish are easily digested & have good protein content.

'It's a stallion - can't you tell?'
Perhaps we could go somewhere a bit quieter.
Bees are adept at detecting signs of disease in humans
yet insects have often been used as weapons.
   Can you confirm your movements last night?

Is the misery of poverty preferable to the misery of work?
Yet speaking may well cover a multitude of sins.
I have three drawings here, which will show,
more-or-less, what I mean.
   Now we need to find a way into this lost world.

Then they Stopped Clapping

Normal breathing is quiet & easy.
Let us pause for a moment
to review the patient's situation.
Why should the bees just pack up and leave?

Yet it was a blow in the face
to conventional thinking &
these pools are teeming with life.
If possible, abandon your car before it sinks.

& then there was the group's
visual image, which was extreme,
even for the time. Who is this man
& what is he doing in my house?

I'm always interested in people
with a criminal record yet they learn
to do this spontaneously by holding
their breath & pulling in their abdomens.

We were soon joined by
a solitary dancer & people clapping.
This show opens with a walk
through the streets of a city.

'I was out with my family one day
when I was dragged into a car by a fan',
she said. Once inside, we instantly
move at a slower pace.

Sandy shores tend to be gentle & sloping.
From a distance they look purely decorative
but as you get closer you can see the details.
This complex glass structure is a marvel of modern design.

As we push deeper we hope the beasts
will start to show themselves. 'What do
you mean by "signs of possession''', she asked.
Of course, you won't get him to corroborate any of this.

An Odd Phrase to Use

Should loss be stigmatised as illness?
It's impossible to say that someone
will or won't go on to develop one of these
conditions. Spring is a contested season.

'I believed that THEN & I believe
it now', he said. Yet his lip-synching
lagged slightly behind the music.
Don't these conditions run in the family?

So far attacks have only occurred
along the coasts. Shocking was what
he wanted to be & shocking was what
he was. 'It's all a bit androgynous', she said.

Let's just say I have a picture in my head
of what happens in the final scene.
This time we had stronger legs & smaller
backpacks. What happens after the check?

Richard Thompson's in the background
discussing traditional ballads & playing
1952 Vincent Black Lightning
- glorious.
It's a redefinition of self.

Here the path is more frequently interrupted
by fishing harbours. Is it Beesley Street
Baker Street
that Noel's talking about?
This is an answering machine - please go away!

I could do that for you if you can tell me
his name. 'It's a pacu - a pink pacu', he said.
Do we have an organic connection to spring?
'We were ripe for exploitation & there was Bowie'.

'If it's musical enough then you don't
need meaning', said Ian, while discussing
Beefheart & talking about decals. Now he
decides to allow himself to do what he does best.

An Exit Permit

He spoke through his teeth like an inept ventriloquist.
As the sun begins to set the pilot initiates a gentle descent.
Crime stories might not be significant but they are interesting.
I am beginning to have doubts about this lucid dream programme.
     Just as you reach a door you realise you are naked.
A bell acts as a spell.
Was she
acting or was she being observed?
'Even in geologically rich locations you can't
just drill anywhere', she said.
     Weaver fish lie buried in the sand.

Yet this eruption of
the irrational in my life
has certainly been a shock.
We will not be renewing your contract.
     Muddy wastelands beckon.

They are coming at us from all directions.
It's moments such as this that make
you wish for a camera. Today, she seems
to have floated in from a David Lynch movie.
     All dreams, however fragmentary, are to be logged.

Of all our senses taste is the one
we most associate with pleasure.
Perhaps she is in a state of permanent hibernation?
Even a cheese-grater is good for a bit of frottage.
     Sometimes we simply get our facts wrong.

Hiccupping starts with a sudden inhalation.
This is a problem frequently encountered by those
wading through water. 'Classic displacement activity',
she murmured. Most folk tales begin with an act of cruelty.
     Your application will be processed in strict confidence.

Over & over the same pattern emerges.
Country & western ballads thud inaudibly from
hidden speakers yet these are installations rather than
performances. 'Don just washed over him like a big,
     three-master schooner in full sail', said Ian.

     Steve Spence 2013