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In the uncomfortably quiet streets

  • 16 June 2015

The Desolate Spaces   We need our ghosts like poems   Especially the kind That cling to the palate   The kind of ghosts that belong To no program   The kind of poems that cling To the roof of your mouth Like home-made wine   I have poetry you said   I have poetry I have need Of nothing else   I have poetry   Nobody except everybody Taught me   Now I need only everything   Nothing else.  

Giants   This morning I woke up scared for In my dream I was poet   I was a poet in my nightmare   Worst of all I think In the uncomfortably quiet streets I think I may have been The only poet   Streets like the streets In Blue Velvet or Land of the Giants.

  The Last Book   This beautiful notebook Sounds like the sea Full of scratches and bites   Mayakovsky Wrote that a good notebook And understanding how to use it Are more important than Just about anything   I am extra careful I carry a beautiful library around with me everywhere In a stone Small sharp white no black Imbued with the nothing of ages Carrying everything dangerous Dangerously self-educated A boatload of navigators learning new tongues After nothing more than a fair crack at happiness   Poetry they tell us Is always a new page Nestled in between the lines Of the old page   In the last book.

Dr John Falzon is Chief Executive of the St Vincent de Paul Society National Council and is author of The Language of the Unheard (2012).