The First Racing Turn

We can start with the basics –
the lifting and full leans on oars –
but before long we will have to dig
and pull at less certain surfaces
out at sea and under the command
of racing rules – those set demands
of distance and clockwise turns
around anchored buoys – whilst
in smacking earshot of others’ boats –
those crews that can pull away –
under almost-mechanical techniques –
those we have to hone – Our finest victory
will be the first finish we achieve –
and then we will know how to row

Petite


There is a smallness
to you,
he thought,
just physical,
petite, of course,
whilst, in that moment,
you exploded in his eyes,
as he watched your lips
form the word ‘Pogues’,
thinking what a kiss,
on such lips
would be like,
a largeness of
bitten pout,
as you reformed
your accent
under his tease:
You walked back,
untouched,
on lit streets.


Upstairs Room, Prince Albert.

Dead-weight, rouche mourning drapes,
long-fitted, allying the room’s beams,
accentuated by the dusty refraction
on the glitter ball, still, yet working:
Ghost flecks off the mirrored-planet:

Look close, a sphere of a thousand selfies.
I hold my phone up, like we do, to be
there in the room, on record, uploaded,
few particulates of life are ever captured,
by these devices for palm memories:

Polaroid proved it, before our kids were born;
quickened development misses exposure.
On the wall an almost life-size John Peel
stands in this room, analogue approval,
for every act to appear here, upstairs.