The human goldfish making colour and form

Of these invisible waves and currents

The goldfish making sense and meaning

In this canyon of nothing

Notions with less substance

Than a rippling soap bubble balloon

Slung out of a bubble maker on a sunny morning

Concepts with less substance than

Uncertain conventions

Personal histories carried like paperbacks

Where no paperbacks are carried

A wilful chronicle trapped in the skull

A lonely pellet of green oil holding all your gospels

Sagas, romances, moral tracts, cantos

Your personal opera, superimposed

Over the game board of the world

When that green oil capsule splits, like a valium being shared

It runs out into the earth clear of all opera, data, meaning

Runs sterilized through that soil


But while we walk the surface, we’ve got

Television boiling like an aquarium

We’ve got commissioned poetry painted

On the wall behind the council offices

We’ve got ideologies

With the pungent damp metal smell of fire escapes

We’ve got projections basking in bank loan brochures

Piloting deckchairs down conquered Fijian beaches

We’ve got measurement in sticks of furniture

We’ve got a place at the beer garden table

We’ve got acceptance by not speaking out of turn

We will have something we can grip like an anchor

With the empty breathable air around us

There is a rusty six foot anchor and we can grip it

For all we’re worth


Will Swan




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