A Tincture of Tears

A tincture of tears and a triple cross for you
Enraptured by alchemic kiss our teeth dissolve to glue
Not holding hands but brushing arms while walking through the park
Your smile’s a heliolithic God that all men bend before

I gazed up at the Sussex Downs : a poem froze in clay
Enacting all those Copper’s songs as in some ancient play
Then further down in Brighton the sibilant sea did rush
I trembled like a Venetian blind remembering your touch

A nightingale choking on a worm
True beauty’s always tempered by the finger print of pain
So I’ll sing praise to your imperfect face
And never count on nothing but your finger nails

Andalusian Moon

It happened on one Whitsuntide
Neath the moon of Andalucía
And, low, my eyes were magnetized
By it’s celestial splendour

And all the airborne spores of spring
All trembled in the ether
The bourgonvillas as crimson as
The livid blood of Lorca

And all the earth’s sweet miscreant souls
Sang in gentle rapture
The Living Name of the Living God
No living man could utter

That name it bloomed inside my mind
As I drank from the fountain
Cathedrals rose from the soil of Spain
Hardening into mountains

And at that point where all the elements agree
In a universal system
The moon and I mirrored in the pool
Caused shockwaves of revulsion

I laid down on a rock to sleep
And my dreams were so painful that
When I awoke
The stone pillow had broke
Into a craggy heap

I am merely a man
And, though I recognise beauty,
I’ll never achieve it-
My nature limits and corrupts me.
But in that delicious abyss
Tween desire and attainment, I’ll abide
Tethered by the cold, gold chain of life
Until I succumb to oblivion
A rose-head tossed upon a hulking ocean
Between the welt and the lash
Tween the seedling and the sod
Here I shall mouth the Living Name of the Living God

The Wakefield Anthem

In Yorkshire near Bethlehem as I have heard told
There Eve was expelled from her evergreen grove
And as she passed by the birds stopped their song
She crawled out of paradise down the A61

She cried; ‘Welcome perdition
I’ve dressed myself in a hope so thin
And abandoned all ambition’

Remember this; The shepherd of men
Was dead once now has risen again
And at his side where the lances went in
Rejoicing was heard for his blood it did sing

It sang ‘Welcome perdition…

The most startling vision that ‘ere I did see
Where the Swale and the Calder meet the Dead Sea
With the face of a man prowling on all fours
The Lion of Judah on the north Yorkshire moors

It cried ‘Welcome perdition…

Now eternal Athens and eternal Rome
Have been relocated to eternal Denholme
Where the hawthorn and the lily wreath round every door
And perpetual gladness avails every soul

We sing ‘Farewell perdition
I’ve dressed myself in a hope so fine
And regained my ambition’

The Kingdom Within

I dreamed I’d dug a grave for the last highland piper
In hills as snug as knuckles and smeared in rape
And beat a tattoo for that departed brother
With a drumstick hewn from Adam’s remaining rib

An albino scorpion crawled over Britain
Moving at a deathly pace
It’s sting was poised over London
As Scotland wiped the blood away from its face

Please, please, please
Tell all the flowers to blacken their tiny whitenesses
And tell all the starlings to dull their diaphanous plume
And tell the pallbearer that no fairer corpse will follow him
For he’s gone, yes, he’s gone boys
And left us this song, boys,
Of our impending doom

Sing, sing McCrimmond
Though your mouth is blood filled
Bow down Cumberland
Though your mouth is fed

And sing, sing Cameron
From your thrown of glory
Bow down Campbell
From your thrown of death

And ever since the reign
Ever since the reign
Of Scotland’s treacherous son

Sing sing McCrimmond
Though your mouth is blood filled
Bow down Cumberland
Though your mouth is fed

My father was a general at Culloden
(twitching in the mud)
My mother was a tart: legs splayed like a wish bone
(twitching in the mud)

Sing, sing McCrimmond
Though your mouth is blood filled
Bow down Cumberland
Though your mouth is fed

Now, we’ll never forget till the Inver runs red-o
(twitching in the mud)
With Stirling the deathbed and Scapa as the headstone
(twitching in the mud)

The Golden Boat

I served my time in paradise
(On board the golden boat)
In paradise I served my time
(All on board the golden boat)
Then I sailed down the birth canal
That glistening abyss thru her to hell
Just labouring thru parturient mess
It turned my Blues from blue to red
And I was thrust into the weeping world
The bastard son of my bestest girl
I gave my mum the gay gold ring
It made her weep, it made her sing
Then I tripped down Great Western Road
Singing a pale, irresolvable tune
About the time when Noah sailed
All up the Clyde passed Annandale
Till he stopped at old Govan shore
And proclaimed the New Gomorrah
Where St Lucy and St Jerome
And El Greco and Sir John Soame
Crush ecstasy with penitent’s stone
For beggars at the edge of Rome
That’s burning in its perfect ruin
Just morsals in the mouth of time
Ripped as human flesh from bone
First snarl and scrabble in the womb
Then lifeless in their gothic tomb
And seated in that burning ruin
Cackling, wretched and alone
With eyes like eggs and mouth afoam
Saint Peter on a cedar throne
Ringing on a tongue less bell
The one thats calling us all home
And when I die and I’m ding dong dead
And left this world of joy and dread
Ill be ringing on that tongue less bell
That calls all us poor sods to hell
And tell my darling mother dear
That I’m crawling right back into her
For its there that all my passions formed
Of whiskey, books and hardcore porn
I served my time in paradise
In paradise I lost my mind

Christ Made a Trance

CHRIST MADE A TRANCE ONE FRIDAY VIEW
AND HE MADE IT WITH HIS OWN HAND
HE MADE THE SUN CLEAR ALL OF THE MOON
LIKE WATER ON DRY LAND

LIKE WATER ON DRY LAND, MAN-CHRIST
WHO DIED ALL ON THE TREE
WHAT SHALL WE DO FOR OUR SAVIOUR
AS HE HAS DONE FOR WE

WHAT SHALL WE DO FOR OUR SAVIOUR
WHO DIED ALL ON THE ROAD
WE’LL DO AS MUCH FOR HIM, MAN-CHRIST
WHO SHARED HIS PRECIOUS BLOOD

THREE DROPS OF OUR SWEET SAVIOUR’S BLOOD
WHERE SHED ON CALVERY
FELL ON THE PRECIOUS GRASS, MAN-CHRIST
LIKE THE LEAVES FALL DOWN FROM THE TREE

THE HOLLY POINTS HER HEAD UP TO HEAVEN
TO SHOW HER BERRIES RED
THREE DROPS OF OUR SWEET SAVIOUR’S BLOOD
ON CALVERY WAS SHED

OH, HELL IS DEEP AND HELL IS DARK
AND HELL IS FULL OF MIST
WHAT SHALL WE DO FOR OUR SAVIOUR
AS HE HAS DONE FOR US

CHRIST MADE A TRANCE ONE FRIDAY AT NONE
AND HE MADE IT WITH HIS RIGHT HAND
HE MADE THE SUN CLEAR ALL OF THE MOON
LIKE WATER ON DRY LAND
LIKE WATER ON DRY LAND

Light of the Invisible Light

I care not for what happens around me
But immeasurably for what happens inside me
The lion lays down with the lamb
National anthems bursting in their throats like ripened suns
The trumpet sounds, hosannas strewn the ground

The spark that first set fire to the sun
Still exists within the sun
Calling itself home

How long, how long
Charm the light out of the sun
Let every beam be numbered and named
And let every man proclaim
From the bass note of his brain
The light of the invisible lamp (x3)

Glory immeasurable
Pleasure unquenchable (x2)

I go to sleep and wake up painting
‘The View Over Toledo’ in total darkness
A power unseen paints shapes unnamed
I am a mere spectator and my hand directed
The night it roars, buckles and falls to all fours

The force that first did blacken the night
Still exists within the night
Calling itself home

How long, how long
Charm the light out of the sun
Let every beam be numbered and named
And let every man proclaim
From the bass note of his brain
The light of the invisible lamp (x3)

Glory immeasurable
Pleasure unquenchable (x2)

John Ball’s Blues

For Cromwell’s pewter crown
The greenwood’s burning down
One vast orgasmic ‘yes’ (x2)

The dreamer is prisoner to the dream
The shoreline is warden to the sea
What once was hidden
Now is fully seen
We are exiles from eternity

For every man there is a bait
He can’t help but swallow
The dog returns to it’s own mess
For comfort and to wallow

Desires harden into habits
Once used you just replace them
I can’t keep track of every toll
Road I’ve ever taken

Reaching for the storm inside the eye
Mutilated birds fall from the sky

Examining the follies of a life
Difficult to miss and hard to like

When Adam delved and Eve span
Who then was the gentleman?
When Adam delved and Eve span
Who then was the gentleman?

A BOY’S DREAM

I WAS BORN UPON A CURSED MORNING
DEVOURING MY OWN TAIL ETERNALLY
I STAGGERED FROM SCHOOL ROOM TO BAR ROOM AND BACK AGAIN
FARMING WHAT FIRE FROM EVERYMAN
MY MIND IS A MEAT-COLOURED LOCOMOTIVE
MARAUDING THROUGH STATIONS OF NIGHT
EVEN IF THE VISIONS THAT I’VE FORGOTTEN
SENT ME MAD, WELL AT LEAST I’VE SEEN THEM