ON THE SUN
On the Sun-
How it rose, and I didn’t notice,
hurling myself around as soon as hurling
How it reached further into the sky,
and didn’t notice because I was
hurling balls around hot asphalt;
spending weekends a toxic nocturne.
How it went beyond a third of its path,
East to West, and for many, many months
didn’t notice because I lay invalid, entombed
in a deathdark room.
As it approaches the zenith of its trajectory,
I look above, and realise where
the warmth and light is coming from.
let me remain aware
of your blazing, colossal cargo,
persisting in immense arc,
till the day closes and I see no more.
MOTHER OF MUSSOLINI
Getting cosy with Miss Anne Thropy
ain’t all it’s rumoured to be.
She’ll eat you up, and shit you out;
the aftertaste is yours.
Tried to beat her
with London’s Yellow Pages.
She ate two volumes and
spat out the numbers, dialling
each an obscene phonecall.
Only a fool
under her wheels in thrall.
Like Succubi, she’ll suck you dry –
of laughter, goodwill, the wish
to touch and be touched.
She is young, she is old; old as
Adam and Eve, as every agape,
semi-erect Darwinian avatar.
Hardly warm, often glacial –
a bitch, like the
mother of Mussolini
but the only friend I had,
after dropping off the radar,
presumed Killed In Action.
Anne never loved me
and I had love for no-one,
yet fell and hurt for her.
Then she was gone, like
an exonerated banshee.
Olfactory affront in the old factory,
saw cockroaches and rats in the refectory;
blue-collar ghosts eat jam and toast with Tetley’s tea
and wail about their Class.
Been forty years since they (who are they?) shut us down,
as births and deaths have come and gone, like half-a-crown.
The sainted Union let us fall without a sound
and left us on our arse.
Red never rose the way we wished, like Che, it would,
Red never showed its blistered face for any good,
Red only took, purloined a man of livelihood;
George Orwell had it clear.
Unlock these iron doors, let daylight purge this tomb,
unbar the windows, shift the hulks, machine and loom.
Sweep out the dust that beds down thick, and use this room -
our time has ended here.
Luke Prater is thirty-four and lives in the UK with a guitar or two, a Mac, a silent fridge and a brain that won’t switch off. He scribbles lines of poetry & short prose (and sometimes song) when the fickle Muse chooses to press her naked body to his. More of his work can be found on his site –