Posts Tagged ‘conversation’


the live electric
rail — certain death — touched upon
lightly, as though just
some mere stray topic we both
prefer not to talk about

This poem lacks fire. Which is pretty ironic given the subject matter. I dreamed Prince Charles was preparing a speech using a sheet of my own writing as the basis. But he had crossed out roughly half of it as unsuitable and too personal. We were both trying to remember how many times we’d had sex (together). So the dream is about self-censorship and avoidance. This would relate to yesterday evening spent in the pub with a colleague from work whom I’ve known a very long time. The evening went well except for one or two wobbly moments when the topic of conversation became too personal (our respective relationships). In my dream I saw — twice — somebody walking along the underground railtrack and accidentally stepping on the live rail without anything more than a slight electric shock.



bite me — do it now
before I change my mind — too
late — whoops! game over

I dreamed of a tiger nuzzling my hand. I had the thought that, if it was hungry, I might be in danger: hungry tigers attack human beings. ‘Game over’ carries just the right connotations as to the likely fate of extinction awaiting tigers. All through the eighties I was always struggling unsuccessfully to get laid. It felt as if sex (or love) was a dance with which I was always constantly out of step. Even these days, plain ordinary human conversation sometimes feels to me a little like that.


he used to listen
spellbound while I delivered
whatever wisdom
one ten-year-old can impart
graciously to another

There was a precocity about me as a child, but this friend brought out the best side of it. I remember I used to talk to him the way both of my parents (individually) talked sometimes to me — that is, quietly and thoughtfully. Philosophically, even. Sharing adult wisdom, or even adult perplexity, in a more or less wholesome way. I must have internalised the experience and then duplicated it for my friend’s benefit. Goodness only knows what I talked about during these conversations, when I talked and he listened.