Issue a5 · 2012





by Iain Britton





I grab my share of the industry


       there’s much to put on display


     to be repeated


                          enough for everybody


to feel their eyes watering


     as if you were born in a grotto


            to satisfy requirements



                 / individuals smell


of old clothes old furniture           this crowded house /


                                    they smell of putrefaction



      photocopied heads



they dangle my image from a ceiling


     glossy banners          flapping at a dysfunctional system



            hangers-on spill outside on bright cold days


to drug up on frosty white crystals on the emptiness of streets

the stripped bareness of gardens the skeletal indifference

of huntaway messiahs



they’re constantly alert


to the horizon lying down


a silhouette of contours


of statues




and dipped into the sun’s red box



such is the transience


of migratory things



I flick forward the shadow of a wind wand /       snap

at yellow bones



others     like you      hoof it with shrieks         the frivolity


of cohabitation /         they go



        with pieced-together memorials


the precious gifts of living within a pantomime


             convincing themselves


             all is constant

             no need for refurbishment

             the sweeping out of books

             the eradication of overstayers



you were made with certain duties in mind


one look /       slits the bellies of clouds


      heavy on hills


the rain bloats the dirt


                         houses regroup




after the seventh day


                            (to hell with keeping it holy)


                   hostilities resume


 knocking the tops off makeshift enterprises



I call the shots


I shift the points of the compass


I point you towards magnetic north


                       or where it should be











Iain Britton is online at