Canto CCXXXV

The spring day sky is always at its grandest
when spread above the drive-in Maccy D’s
or dull red rows of small suburban houses,

where bored kids in square yards look up to see
the Rorschachian plenum of the heavens
that evoke annual visits to the sea

and mountains like the ones on television.

Canto CXCVIII

I’m listening to Sabbath in the sunshine—
begone, begone my wintry meloncholia—
for there’s no life enhancing combination

like Hail Satans and flowering magnolia.
Death bells knell, Iommi’s guitar flails
as Queen ants send out newly hatched soldiers.

As birdsong washes over sleepy hills,
Ozzie’s muezzin call to the Black Mass
keeps the clustered gangs of daffodils

out of Morrissey’s limp and foppish grasp.

Canto CXCV

The antenatal midwife’s art is subtle,
so when she talks about painful contractions
she coyly phrases them as “powerful”

during her warm and flawless exposition.
She shares a pithy yarn about another
midwife who used the curious expression

that each woman “would open like a flower”,
which wasn’t quite as helpful to the one girl
as she was wheeled to the caesarean theatre.

But who’s to say that when flowers uncurl
they are not screaming? Who’s to say that pain
does not seep through the murkiest tendril?

Who’s to say our bodies do not turn
through their own phases—that we animals
don’t flourish and fade with our own seasons?

The red lines form a jagged, Aztec trail
around your swelling stomach. When my palm
finds their pattern at nightfall I can tell

that ground frosts have been banished, Spring has come.

Canto CLVII

There’s no escaping from the bloody cold,
forget imminent Spring, three bar heaters,
there ain’t enough pennies to pay the toll

to keep our local fireball’s energy metre
from running down to zero. All you know
of this unfurling universe’s features

is warmth and muffled noise. The coming snow
will coax shivers and cuss words from your Mum,
your kicks provide the hope to get us through

the endless bastard wintertimes to come.

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