Motel Blues

False cowboys take up motel rooms.

You’re in that weary state where you mumble phrases

Like: “I don’t know man” and “just give me the key”

And you want to wave goodbye

To the ugly landscape. The person at reception

Tells you the pool is closed. There’s no barrier around the pool

But you don’t want to take a chance. There’s one room left.

 

A cowboy stands idle under the sad yellow light

Blackened by flies and acting forlorn.

You know for a fact his mind’s on the steak he had

When he was seven and his father came home early.

 

Motel rooms scream secrets

But you’re too tired for degeneracy – anyway,

The mayor of a nearby town is entertaining in room 207

Dressed as a gigolo Santa in July. Never the less,

The orange heat of the dawn sun

Coming through the blinds in the desert morn

Is as welcoming as any waterfall.

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Average Day

Propulsion, speed, Opera

Bowling down the road in sleepless coattails

And the same gloves you slept in –

What a gorilla, devoid of inspiration

Wallowing in howling sin, desperate as a star

Ready to supernova. Arrested for jaywalking

And screaming at the police for offences

Mismanaged. Work in the morning,

Sad wailing musical pipe dream romance –

Stale coffee. Dreams written as tattoos.

Every eye is on you like Apollo: a crumbling obelisk

Cursing to the dirt, asking the earth

“Why aren’t I rich yet?” – Some kind of prayer.

Writing for NME

It’s an aspiration,

Nay! A dream!

To destroy a hotel room

While my body is as weak as a guitar string

Left on a guitar by an 80 year old

Farmer who’s seen everything before.

But, unlike him, I’ll be dancing

Gyrating like sin, singing and drinking

(Attempting to do both at the same time)

Ready to interview a Mancunian upstart

With a fringe

And a paisley shirt

But the guy will have to call me and not give up

Because I guarantee I’ll be passed out

In glory.

Conflicted

I’m waiting for fate to hand me what I want

Because to go out and grab it shakes me to grey

And I retreat. I want to wake early, before the world;

Get the bus, work. I want to write the feeling

Of changing seasons, that which excites

And fills the air with sweet leaves falling.

I want to know the names of streets

And follow them like a natural dance

Not having to look forward in a white shirt and tie.

And I want to rock and roll – but to write is to

Be safe. And that’s easier.

Biography

I want to be lazy, like an old string

On a rusted guitar or a prophet

Lounging in the Spanish sun. It would be nice

To have a clear mind, like a cat on the street –

But Coffee and inspiration makes me shake

And I can feel the weeping in my chest,

Like a Robin on the washing line.

Never mind existentialism – that doesn’t cut it,

My body is whole and wild and I imagine excess

And decadent days in which to waste away.

And then I write about them.

St Enodoc Church

The wind whipped the sands.

The sky was grey and as we came to the café

It began to rain. We took tea under the cover.

The rain stopped, we found the footpath

That led to the open greenspace – the golf course,

The sandy paths, the long grass. The sun was starting

To burn through the tough clouds. We approached

Nearer to our destination. I could see the steeple.

One more path led us to the site of the 12th century chapel:

‘St Enodoc Church’. The black headstone of Betjeman

Stood proud and gleaming. We sat on the bench

Next to him and looked out on the perfect blue sky

And white wandering clouds, the long green fields of

Padstow opposite and the wide free sea. I looked, in the heat

And the breeze, for the oldest grave. One weathered and worn

Told of a man born in 1700, died aged 100 in 1800.

Fred Schneider

I let Fred Schneider into my house

And now we’re selling discount fish

At tourist prices but I suspect my house

Is haunted now and a constant fog

Drifts through it like London and the walls

Are damp and blue. We have problems with

Seagulls and men with hooks for hands in

Yellow cagoules. Jazz is banned to my chagrin.

Tai Chi is practiced by the dirty green bottles

That house our experiments. Hausu, what a film.

Summer is busy for us but the day trips to the bay

To gather more fish are always a treat.

Ragged Storm

Ragged storm! With the voice and demeanour

Of God, do you encircle me for judgement?

Are my sins a veil to lose me between worlds?

I am only one among many servants

That fell to the serpent’s way,

Outcast from the dregs of empire

That, like a plague, covers the world in a more

Vengeful darkness than thee.

 

Now I stand helpless to your claws

And the lashing rain that cleanses us

And the torn lightning that whips us.

Towards the darkling plume we sail

And I wonder if we deserve to see the day again.