Monday, 8 August 2016

This page is for grown-ups only

The Book of Intellections

The wisest man in the world
Lived at the top of the hill.

It was a woman.

It took him five hours to make the climb,
Carrying with him The Book of Intellections.

He handed the volume over.

"What is this great mountain of tosh, O Wise One?" he asked.

She read it.

"It is two things at once; yet neither. It is a story written for children pretending to be for grown-ups, and it is a story written for grown-ups pretending to be for children."

"How can that be?" he asked.

"It cannot," she answered.

Alcuin Bramerton (2014)

Small visitors

At last
She has been left alone.

She walks slow
And free
And alert
Through the flowers.

There is a sleepy smell
Of butterflies
In the old garden,
And honey
And pollen
And the soft rustle
Of petals.

The girl,
Dressed in cornflower blue,
Sits down on the grass
Beside a tall,
Red-brick wall
And opens her book.

Around her feet
Freshly fallen fruit
Draws small visitors.

Alcuin Bramerton (2014)

Novel in Burnley

A woman with tired eyes
Is reading a Jane Austen novel
In Burnley, Lancashire.

She orders a plate
Of mushy peas.

"We don't do food
At Lloyds Bank plc,"
Says the cashier.

Alcuin Bramerton (2014)

Reasonable request

It is a rainy day.

A woman in a pleated skirt
Goes into the library
Approaches an earnest-looking young librarian
And says: "I need a book."

"What kind of book do you need?
Asks the librarian.

"I need a book with paper pages,
And neat printing
On two of the six sides of each page."

"That is a reasonable request
For two reasons,"
Says the librarian.

"First, this is a library,
And for the convenience
Of the general public
Books with paper pages
Are stored in libraries such as this."

"And, second, four of the six sides
Of a piece of paper
Are insufficiently large in surface area
To carry print of a size
Which can comfortably be read
By the human eye."

"Would you mind awfully
If I punch you on the nose?"
Says the woman in the pleated skirt.
"I find your attitude
Insufferably pedantic,
Even for a librarian."

Alcuin Bramerton (2014) 

Living text entity

We have to allow
For the possibility that
A book is
A living text entity:
A text-being.

Go into an old library
At midnight
When the full moon
Is shining through the windows.

Be very still
And listen
With your skin.

You can hear
The books
Talking to each other.

But in which language
Do they speak?

And why do they
Go quiet
When you look at them?

Alcuin Bramerton (2014)

Syntactically flawless

The seasoned limewood logs
Flicker in the fireplace.

Doctor Piers Stockton
Lights his second-best pipe
And settles down to read
His star student's
Latest essay.

The writing is plainly
The work
Of a sick
And depraved mind.

The essay speaks
Of love
And honour
And duty
And self-sacrifice
And magnificent triumph
Against insuperable odds.

The essay
Connects at no point
With Western establishment values.

It contains no hint
Of cynicism,
Or deceit.

Indeed, it has nothing seminal
To say about democratic ideals,
Post-enlightenment intellection,
A free press
Or capitalist opportunism.

Syntactically flawless,
It is a profoundly depressing read.

Dr Stockton
Screws up the essay
And tosses it into the fire.

Alcuin Bramerton (2014) 

Step change

The Ancient of Days watches from the heights of the East
The Age of the Seventh Energy begins
An old star lights new waters
Melchizedek pipes in the rise of the dawn
There is laughter on the golden air

Alcuin Bramerton (2016)

No comments:

Post a Comment