...Off the beaten track in the cold outback’s not what a feller thinks
as the perfect place for the human race but more for bear or lynx.
The place to be unfenced and free is a place most men would shun
but the snowy waste is to the taste...
...Close-up of finger of the Professor pressing a doorbell which reads ORPHEUS. It morphs first to Bulgarian Cyrillic, then to Greek.
The Professor is walking up a hill in a Bulgarian village, Bartak.
...Omar Khayyam Restaurant, Bradford
The blasphemers’ banquet table: there
on mirrored cushions will sit Voltaire,
me, Molière, Omar Khayyam, Lord Byron
and that, that’s Salman Rushdie’s chair.
It’s perfect for tonight’s blasphemers...
...The Mathematical Herod
On the blank blackness of the blackboard a hand writes TEST.
Then we are in a classroom of twenty-eight kids, the fourteen boys we have already seen and the fourteen girls some of whose voices we have heard as Rachel...
...High Royds Hospital, Day
A Yorkshire dry-stone wall. The clock tower of High Royds Hospital, Menston, near Ilkley, is first glimpsed through a crack in the dry-stone wall, then seen in the distance as the central feature of a large...
In come the letters sack after sack
for the Lady in Red to speed up the track.
Woman Postal Worker
In come the letters heap after heap
me a empty mail bags all night in mi sleep.
...A city wall not quite sure where,
no May Day posters plastered there.
Although it’s May Day no parade
disturbs the new free world of trade,
only the memory of a choir
and from it one voice rising higher
The lyra man.
...Gulf: Tank Gorgon / Golden Sea.
From long ago the Gorgon’s gaze
stares through time into our days.
Under seas, as slow as oil
the Gorgon’s snaky tresses coil.
The Gorgon under the golden tide
brings ghettos, gulags, genocide.
...I heard a sound I thought was birds
but then I swear I heard these words:
‘This voice comes from the shadow cast
by Hiroshima’s A-bomb blast.
The sound you hear inside this case
is of a man who fans the face
he used to have...
...The Muffled Bells
Church: Muffles Being Put on Bells.
They’re muffling the bells for Stanley Hall.
Stanley Hall the Breamore miller’s dead.
Clappers in cowhide cladding peel and call
all those who used his flour in their bread.
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