Tending to a particular | demographic | A forest of tall trees, a scent of sawdust and engine grease | Elite | fluttering of his eyelids | the vast “episode” commences | a shaking of dark skies | the pelleting hail on tin roofs | a lumber truck lifted into the sky | crush of malt and | mixed in | a speeding flick-book of Bowie | young Brando | James Dean | the end | thrown into a pillow storm | of white clouds | black clouds | This is not Gansu province | population of 26 million (as of 2009) | covers | an area of 425,800 square kilometres (164,400 square miles) | The storm is | stored in glass | a particular | fuss among the electrons is over | they descend | from their hermitage | in the air | go back to their highpoint memoirs | look ahead | to the next meeting | copious notes to be made | The papery boots | of currencies on the march | stomp in whispers and in silent scrolls | economies collapsing | in a side bar | of Mr Tittle-Tattle | or Monsieur Incognito | Burned by another race’s sun | taught the phases | of an alien moon | Walking away | allowing for bias | or staying put | in the wrong | place | feeling | the right emotion

Performing the style of marching derived | from the Prussian Stechschritt, the “piercing step” | called the “goose step” in England | is technically difficult | certainly to maintain | the standard march tempo | of 120 paces per minute | The boy is into | 90s indie | stuff like Mudhoney | Nirvana | Pearl Jam | he plays the drums and is | tight in his uniform | Soft shadows | in the moss garden | above us | the far-off burn | of a military plane | passing | you touch | the side of my face | the whorl and whirl of your finger | tips | the raw | silk of two skins | not quite | meeting | In the immigrant forest | the gingerbread men and the rapists and gangsters | mass and loiter | the rumour leads to hanging and beating | the words lead to blood and trauma | old | Middlesbrough lingo | kicked his fucking teeth back down his throat | Taking sides | of a bed | planning to meet | in Starbucks or Bills | Sailors on shore leave | graze and scatter | Future comrades | roll and decay | drowned in the waves | in cold, distant waters | their bodies | sway | and this is the unheard reply | to the nation that owned the sea | of the sea

 


from the series fleeting pixel (series of 1,000 poems, 2012–2016)

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