This reading was recorded at Radio Ca’ Foscari at CFZ, Venice, Italy, on the 17th of April 2013. Thanks to the Project Manager Toni Fontana and Nicolò Groja at the mixer.
The Poetry Police
And Partington Streets,
I'm stopped by the sirens
Of the Poetry Police.
"Ok, mister," hey bawl on the fog-horn
"step out of your Limerick,
with your hands against the metaphor.
There is the tang of irony in your breath
And your eyes glazed with imagery."
My fingers, they say, smell of allegory
And they search my back-pockets for an
Illegal stash of Genius.
"Now," they bark, "walk the pentameter
But if you cross the perimeter,
We'll shoot." (Poetry doesn't stop bullets,
This is not the Matrix. Poets aren't Marxists).
They shall charge me,
With Writing while Under the Influence of Thinking!
When I run out of poetic tricks
I shall commit syntax.
Ferry my body in a Verse,
And bury me, in the Symmetry.
From What If I am a Literary Gangster? (Nairobi: Brown Bear Insignia, 2007).