would you, but would you

attempting the traditional      or rather
outbreaks of houses in the face of violence

the way my father talks of Cable Street
as if it's not there and it isn't
Columbia Road a jumble of murder and high flowers
days to be gone back to among many

there is a hint that this is a set up
but to what      how can I be sure
that I'm not just queuing      throwing cobbles
at advancement
but you      would you deceive me
with a coalition of the lost
forgetful of fighting meaning
until pistachio husks litter tasteless pavements

you will understand now why I wear camouflage trousers
as I walk the streets      a man in a folksong
so-called because rain fell on us all
peripheries eaten like knots in a wooden bicycle
               if I could only taste the things you consider to be abstract
               somebody might just understand
                                                                                     dreams are about
as constant as it gets under off-violet footsteps

we bled here
and sank our teeth into whatever was going
long before taking Highgate
                                                         or Richmond Park green
conducting chaotic rites under each streetlamp as it lit
the best of science and religion

having confidence
it is difficult to assume the necessary posture
out of white teeth to lick what's mine

night drew on
            let's take a ride
bringing loan-wigs out of their bright-eyed crevices
transitional passages mobile and wet underfoot
as long-haired kitten-slippers

locomotion in a foreign land

I want to take you home      but
you are lying in the snow erotically
breathing       smoke      slipping down
your open blouse
                                     stop before
too much is revealed                     nettles sting
corked wine in a tired city           dully

and before we slip away into separateness
remember it was intended such an alliance
would milk the old ways dry
as water slaps the inner sanctum
defences down and out                 upon the shore  
rest            limbs                              creeping to rainbow lights
in the doorway
                                                          71 Quilter Street
songs wrung lost                            I believe her name was

last accounts misleading

open book

the ladies were fierce in their requests for flowers

magic is pessimism taken to its logical confusion


it is getting harder to conclude anything
older than yesterday
                                          and even then
excess of confidence can be misleading
'play the scale as if you actually know it
and you'll fool 70% of people' (except musicians)

knowing who's an expert
may be useful for future development
but too many coffees may nonetheless result
in catastrophic diagnoses
about how hearts beat faster when in love with themselves
and everything else is fear

when I left the prefab and came to find you
it was dark in the extreme
alleys of discontent      winter butterflies
fluttered like snow
reversing any sense of control

and I have been inspired to tell you this by a liar
who shudders collages with his broken thumbs
obscuring misprints at pivotal moments in his argument
such that not to go to work is as relevant as
sitting here watching smoke retract into faggy clouds

and when you can say that you can say anything
that was ever concreted under the poetic patio
without the slightest risk
that locks of your hair will become romantic trophies

if I find you agree      I will let you know
that considering these points was important

until then                   'reckless mist envelops the sunken cathedral'

preparing the story

what the thing you'd felt or been through       meant
moss declassifying the tallest tree in the amazon
suitable for improvisation?      expeditions to save
for later salvos of smouldering reality
only a few pages deep in war
                                                          but I've read enough
and breaking fragments open cannot bring myself to
disagree      diagnosing      wilful beauty as a pseudonym
for painstaking carelessness      it seems
walking under initialled umbrellas is unhelpful
like bragging of fresh peaches      who's listening      not the
guitar kid parodying his broken arms
in the double-yellows at the side of a riff
so catchy as to be 'guarded optimism'

why does it take a crank to get a machine going?      good question
these thoughts justify nothing but the existence of thoughts
and is that            blue rinsed under a bakelite exhaler
but      now gone      is wine backdated to
'forgotten in the force of blue days at sea'?

it's not wrong to be generous
but people may take it to heart
luminous with congratulatory throat-catches
confusing agenda with identity
thus                      I'm getting angry with no good reason and it's sunny
now                      at the end of every broken hook sinking towards obfuscation


                             'a couple walk by the sea at night...'

     Nathan Thompson 2010