Not Strictly Entertaining

“This is dumb” grumbled the celebrity chef

as he attempted a clumsy bald-headed plié,

and, mugging shamelessly for the cameras,

he announced he had never danced before.

 

“It’s mad, I’ve never danced before” he revealed,

rubbing his head proudly to a waxen sheen

with his sweaty, torn cuff; he liked it rough,

as his publicist had briefed him he should.

 

“My wife thinks I must be gay!”                                silence,

cut to a sequence of trialled pink sequinned shirts,

a nonsensical statement left to hang in the edit

like a homophobic fart in the prime-time lift.

 

Then cheers as he and his partner hit the dance floor,

hands on bums, pumping their hips with fixed grins,

stiff, like over-sexualised animatronic mannequins

lurching along painfully to Tom Jones’ “Sex Bomb.”

 

One judge liked it, he always does, flirting in his verdict,

one judge hated it, he always does, flinging verbal excrement,

one judge wasn’t sure, she never is, she liked his swinging hips

the last judge was too busy flogging frozen food (like he always is).

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Bhāvanā (Meditation)

Master Hand

Buddhist technique #1 – Palm descending from Heaven

My stomach sinks. I am falling; incredible speed smashes against my ears. I spot a far-off spark and spy a single star. A comets trail catches at me and, suddenly, enveloped, I am still. I push and punch at my prison; the walls respond and retract. Looking up now, I feel weightless as a chink of light appears, opening. I crawl out, on to a great golden palm that quivers beneath me. Gigantic glinting fingers crease, and fold back, to form a clawed cockpit. I step forwards, reborn, the pilot of the hand of God.

Buddhist technique #2 – Void and diffusion

Sailing into night, all is silent as it stretches away forever, the vast black frozen sea. Time seems spurious as all is speed and void, all is silent as it stretches away forever, the vast black frozen sea like sleep with lucid dreaming, and all is silent. A vast sea, black frozen time silence, all is spurious and void. All is silent, and still, and then, suddenly, from eternal darkness, springs forth a light. A coloured pinprick, blinking, beckons me in, the great whim; a simple request for investment of consciousness that must be answered.

Buddhist technique #3 – The hand that feeds

The hand agreed, wordlessly. Vibrations quicken, ear drums quiver. I crouch low as colours grow and blossom: great pink and yellow space-orchids spinning red and blue. We approach as petals part; an interwoven helix of paint box strands unravels. Psychedelic spaghetti twisting past a dislocated prism and we are speed now as we fly through the heart of the matter. A camel squeezed at terminal velocity through the eye of a syringe.

Life Beyond the Screen by A. Television

Discarded TV

 

I was born of a conveyor belt

in a factory line, in to a box,

a blueprint baby you brought home

and set in a cradle before the fire.

 

Happily we grew old together as I threw

my flickering campfire light so bright

that the cold hearth lay forgotten.

You swept my brow of gathering dust

as the porcelain ballerina grew greyer

and we laughed at my portraits,

laughed dust clouds for entire years

as the skeleton clock wound down

on the mantel – its rotation slowed

as time itself grew old and seized.

 

The credits rolled on.

We were golden together.

 

For our anniversary;

you dumped me in a black plastic bag,

moved a skinny bitch in to replace me

but I knew she was coming as

I once knew the red button

of your tender caress, my controller,

before you left me out on the kerb

to the mercy of furry cocked legs,

smashed and unloved in the bin,

cursed by the un-gloved rubbish men.

Read, Wild and Blew

Big Ben and birds on newspaper. London.

 

The wicked paper window,

flaps down a tarmac stream,

wraps colourfully a lamppost

displays, vibrant and obscene

tantalising, tales flicker fleeting,

a thousand blinking stories

winking white at passers-by,

hinting at once-golden glories,

with a murderous, glinting eye,

cantankerous and caterwauling,

pulling Gods down from the sky

hawking squawking pulpy lies,

 

and though it lies now broken

the living window never dies.

 

 

Picture by Roberta Justin, available to buy at: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/55802482856281813/

 

 

 

 

Reservoir (Minus the Dogs)

The lake shimmers, side to side

it glimmers, the topaz sky

held in its eye as a duck

swims across the still sheet,

breaking glass in its wake.

A goose approaches

up the concrete landing ramp

orange webbed feet stamp,

the waddling of its tail white

cotton reflects in my t-shirt.

Orange beak hisses welcome,

hisses for bits of bread

which are carefully thrown.

Blue eyes deep as the water

catch the sun in a cloud break,

tongue clicking in the breeze

like a loose flagpole. Children shout,

chasing green head brown ducks

that spread purple-striped wings

to escape excited chatter –

they conquer all matter

as they soar in the air,

as they swim through a swell,

as they waddle towards us

dinosaurs have inherited the Earth.

No Common Ground

Faith’s beating heart
buried deep
with heads in the sand
and the forgotten road map
to Jerusalem.

Blood runs through
a classroom;
a tomb of innocence
with a smashed roof
and scattered sketches.

How can you follow
a road map
in fighter jets;
with rockets?

Voices silenced,
screaming through sand,
drowned out by the sound
of explosions.

Tinder

Gnarled skin, cut and peeled
from a slender pocked trunk
in a storm by shaking hands
and kept in a cardboard box.

A dried husk of a great legacy,
bark and leaves, verdant beauty
now faded, a silvered shade,
a curled fragment of canopy.

Applied to dead wood, piled,
it adds slight height to sticks
and sits there, dormant, until
match head meets strike strip.

The first flicker of rising flame
tastes tender flesh and bites,
shines bright through silver skin,
catches, and bursts, and burns.

Dry remains of an elegant birch,
those charred smoking fragments
of parchment, just for a moment,
shone, and danced, and died.