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CHRIS McCABE

 

Chris McCabe was born in Liverpool in 1977. He has published poems in a number of places including Poetry Salzburg Review; Angel Exhaust, Great Works and Shearsman. He has read at the Cambridge Conference of Contemporary Poetry 2004 and at the Crossing the Line series in London. He has also read and discussed his work on Resonance FM. He currently works as Assistant Librarian at the Poetry Library, London. His first book, The Hutton Inquiry, has just been published by Salt Publishing.

 

 

 

A DIARY ENTRY

 

And sang Ave Maria with the class,

air expelled from a line of allotment carriers.

And shut my eyes: each gold clasp of corn

in a field, closed, in anticipation of red.

They told me this was harvest.

 

Tonight a fox followed me home (19 May).

For the first time thought of Iran as next inglot

in the cocked hat of a triumvirate of ‘I’s’.

A place of binliners & gates & dust called Endland

a summer banjo in Dagenham, no pulse moves

for a tragedy involving British soldiers

& an aircraft called Hercules.

 

Fox feigns still, follows. Through private paths,

under hubcaps. A Blaupunkt in a Mercedes-Benz

severs him off. Complete loss of red:

gasless flame gives no ignition to privets.

 

 

DECONSTRUCTING WOODY

 

Do you think there’s some ill-omen that you didn’t get a cherry in your muesli? I mean, are you going to die or

something? So he creates an on-screen identity of panic, of lack, then gets others to play it out with various degrees of

authenticity. Established name as replicated, a face-ready facsimile. Like collecting baseball cards for fun when you’re

the player on every one of them. Or bear-baiting yourself when you’re not a bear. Branagh my favourite: you disagreed.

The combination of the moving train & the cemetery to the left - sunlight dealt each stone like a keyring torchlight

across a particularly efficient index system - turned my thoughts to Freud. His influence on the great man. To drive

towards death & have sex in the circumstances of your own choosing. To satisfy though, that’s different. But still you

maintained, everyone’s got a Woody in them.

 

 

For ROBERT CREELEY

 

          1

 

Robert, creel-

like it weaves

 

bobs –

 

all seas

begin where

they end

 

text as

threads

weaving

textual

 

becomes a

real thing

by necessity

of each word

 

starts with

echo

& ends

with “echo”

 

re-members

a beginning

 

adjective:

Creeley

 

               2

 

like what they say is it

when out, you never own

 

like your reflection in a mirror

you do not own

 

you only say “shit”

when it leaves the hole

 

*          *          *

 

you would pay

 

if you could not

 

*          *          *

 

the cistern talks

it talks, the cistern

 

movement in the water below

 

it could be a rat

it could be related

 

*          *          *

 

I need to go

 

*          *          *

 

I want to stay

 

 

 JANUARY 23rd

 

black & grey discs

     of a curtain

           (multi

coloured by day)

4:03

       in the white

block of the frozen

toilet

             at stool

 

the scene is an

cient & new

cats & shadows

through frosted

glass

             movement

 

such momentous

instants, each one

as much as this

narrative creaks

as the edge of what

                            is

 

ribs of garden

fence & wooden

slats try to plume

like sails only to

break the pencil

                          nib

 

 

 

 

 

 

copyright © Chris McCabe