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Brander & McGuire Page



there is a demon
in my closet

i see him every time
i change my shirt

he winks a red eye
at me

while acid drool
spittles from his fangs

wreaking havoc
with my underwear

(though i guess the brimstone
kills the moths)

i say hi sometimes
he never speaks

not being one of your
conversational demons

i do not know
what this warty creature

wants in my closet
except maybe

to warn me
i am not alone

breaking eggs

red of tomato
green of pepper
soft fawn
of mushroom

fleshly pink
of ham
yellow of cheese

many colours
on the tongue
the palette
of omelettes

all made
from broken eggs

the torturer's garden

these gladioli
are most unholy
we hang them on hooks
with scorn

and the smug narcissus
will be forced to kiss us
when electrically

the humble daisies
just might be crazies
so with bullwhips
they are torn

and the poinsettia
have got, you bettia,
allies we must

so we give them the rod
and the cattle prod
from the night until
the dawn

while beating roses
with rubber hoses
to make them confess
their thorns

home thoughts of basic cuisine

home is the hunter
home from the hunting

(well what did you expect
a hunter to be doing?)

emptying his kill bag
he exposes

several birds
two squirrels

a skunk
a rat

and a small
traffic policeman

failing to find
in his cookbooks

the recipe
for cop au vin

he eyes the rat
with interest

i thought it was you

i thought it was you

coming up the street
with that spine
by years of steel corset

i thought it was you

hair flying
and that little tilt
to the head
like you were listening
to some half-imagined

i thought it was you

wearing that rhythm section
of flagrant colours
you love so much

i thought it was you

it wasn't
but that damned old traitor hope
keeps whispering in my ear
that one day it might be

unsafe passage

feel the tension
of sinew and thew
as haunches clench
for the spring

taste ahead
the bloodsalt
tears of glory
on the tongue

savour the fear
of the victim
the moment before
the fangs meet

dread the sunrise,
unsated return
to the feral
life of man

taste of nostalgia

sucking my moustache
i hum to the subtle strains
of yesterday's soup


cracks skynuts
with kernels
of rain

bloom under

i am warm
in my cell


feeling myself
once again too torpid
to invade iraq
or blow up wall street

or even hang out
in the bars
with the starlets
and the harlots
and someone's
aunt charlotte
bumming drinks

i consider
a holiday
from lethargy
a mighty bound
into active

in the jungle maybe
where tarzan
is the tour guide
and jane is never plain

or the desert
cacti discussing
with crazed wandering

perhaps the rain forest
learning constriction
from boa experts

but no i would only
wind up teaching
sloth to sloths

so here
in my hermit's cell
with my book
and my pipe
and my beer
and my music

i find at last
my true vacation

at the onega restaurant

the brain, sir,
is very fine today

said the headwaiter
concealing a hand
behind his tails

unfortunately the same
is no longer true
of the chef