Ποιειν Και Πραττειν - create and do

10. The culture of a city

Poetry can provide key insights, when perceived as having the means to formulate new and indeed 'logical' linkages between what goes on in dialy life and what happens at work as well as in decision making processes. Naturally they need to overcome what is visible only in a limited sense and often not at all accessible to the general public. Equally the private domain can be affected but display at the same time a domain of unheard of freedom of man. The poet Ritsos goes so far as to define that freedom as the ability to live out fully one's own inherent craziness, provided it does not disturb the others that the pottery man runs around in his backcourtyard nearly naked, clad only in a loin cloth, while all the women made out of the clay stand there in the yard with their breasts bitten by him as a kind of pleasure he sought but never found with his nagging wife back home. Clearly it would be a great help if poets could bring about and foster a dialogue between planners and citizens as wished for by Voula Mega and what was the case when in Kamilari some people came up to the poets and asked them to tell the people during the poetry reading not to sell their houses but retain the autonomy of the village. They asked the poets to do so in the knowledge that the people would listen to them.

As to culture in a city, there is usually too much rhetorical reference made to public participation, but rarely in practice upheld. There is no short cut to participation. It does mean all get involved and know what is going on. As everyone realizes this is a complicated process and never easy as it requires to raise the level of public debate. Too often someone would stand up and speak endlessly about his Rights being fringed upon, thereby making all others become impatient till they would even shout him down once they feel he is no longer speaking to the point raised at the moment. The workings of an explicit as much as implicit agenda is crucial to realize that articulation at public meetings depends very much on the recognition of the agenda. It requires at the same time someone able to synthesize and to abstract out of the flood of details the pertinent points and again some moderation capable of putting these new points to discussion. Public debate is after all a kind of filter process, hence culture at work, when it comes to moving towards substantial decisions. Crucial is to know the priorities and what value orientations should guide the decisions.

How such qualitative improvements in terms of involvement, discussions, reflections and decisions are possible, there come to mind the discussions between planners and poets during the 'Myth of the City' conference and what was the outcome of the evaluation thereafter. One crucial premise is in need of being understood before some concrete answer can be expected in terms of new poems lending insight into the interplay between images and life tensions within cities as experienced by people. The poetry by Voula Mega is a beginning in that direction, while other poets show in their poems very unique attitudes towards cities. It may mean leapfrogging at times analytical procedures in order to come to terms with such themes as 'voices in the streets'. This is the case with Brendan Kennelly when leaving as professor of Trinity College the grounds and stepping into the streets of Dublin where he listens to the children of the streets telling him, the professor, their stories in exchange for some money. By giving those children without homes but living solely in the streets a voice, Brendan Kennelly brings reality into the world not willing to recognize the full reality of the city and its poorer class which is unable to articulate itself. In his poems zou find reference to the curse of a man without work, or else see the red scarf of a lady turning quickly the corner in order to avoid the sight of children living in cardboard boxes, with a man lingering about ready to mug anyone who dares to cross his path. If anything such poetry is at best to give reasons to think about poverty in the city. Brendan Kennelly expresses all that out of his ability to strike a human relationship to those out in the streets. He lets these people and their voices enter his poems and once read they can make possible the exploration of the self without loss of reality. It is not a vindictive spirit which drives him to write these poems, but a new form of criticism of even his fellow poets (see here his introduction to his book 'Poetry my Arse').

If culture is a filter as to which information gets through and thus governs perception of reality, all the more the case once certain organisations are involved in running particular functions in the city. To use a recent example the organisation of the Euro star demonstrated that most clearly once the train got stuck in the tunnel running underneath the channel. No one knew what technical difficulties had incurred but customers, the travellers were getting increasingly anxious. One of them used his mobile phone to call up the company's headquarters to ask pertinent questions: what is happening, when do we get out and are we going to be compensated? His questions touches as much upon safety concerns as image and reputation of Eurostar itself. Crucial was in his mode of questioning that he inquired as well about safety procedures taken prior to the train entering the tunnel. Are any safety checks made or is everything a matter of daily routine with the train simply entering? The fact that this man could reach headquarters directly while in the precarious situation means organisations have to learn how to cope with immediate and indeed different demands. However, the policy of the company may still want to keep a lid on information going out to the press about the reasons of the breakdown of the train in the tunnel. Crisis management means exactly this: control of information while eager to be able to demonstrate to everyone that the company is responsive and responsibile by doing everything possible to get the passengers in the stuck train out of the tunnel as quickly as possible.

However, if the old policy is upheld despite all new communication possibilities, then such anarchronistic structures shall impede any progress in the rapport between users of the trains and its special system with tracks running through a tunnel going underneath the English channel and the operators of such a system. If confidence and trust breaks down, that will mean bad business for the operators. There is, however, more than mere reputation at stake. The reliability of the system depends also upon the culture of the people involved once the system does break down as in this case. If the people would panic and start becoming irrational while trapped in the train waggons stuck in the tunnel, then one fault line could be traced back to management in not having put trained people on the train in order to cope with such a situation. Moreover, the very conduct of the people is itself an expression of culture as otherwise people would not give each other sufficient space in tight situations and not act in solidarity to one another but just seek a single, even though impossible solution only for themselves. There have been reported, however, cases that privileged passangers were taken off the train by special service provided while the rest had to wait till the additional locomotive arrived to pull the entire train out of the tunnel.

Poets may be able to delineate more exactly the reasons why despite all these communication possibilities, misunderstandings continue to prevail. Or is it already an indication of the fact that 'wordlessness' reigns in a society in which communication is dominated by the communication about the need to communicate: an aphoric eclipse of itself (see Bart Verschaffel and Mark Verminck ed., Wordlessness - as part of the project 'Discourse and Literature' of Antwerp '93, Cultural Capital of Europe, Dublin 1993).

However, the debate about life in cities and therefore their cultures should not focus so much or at least not exclusively on the problem of communication, but rather how a city retains through its culture 'dialectical images' (Adorno). They are needed if artists are to sustain the creative process and if social movements are to sustain actions with a specific purpose in mind. The latter may be linked to the city as being an aesthetical space in which multiple stories are told and many more experiences made on a daily basis so as to enrich the urban fabric. By referring to these images, it may improve the understanding between poets and planners. While the former write much about urban reality insofar as they base their projected images upon intuitive guesses as to what is going on in the city, the latter could question their planning concepts by using these images as complementary references to the city as a whole. In both cases, acknowledgement of observations made along the way can lead to a true implementation of things as they prove to be conducive to life.

Nevertheless the planner Adrian from Germany cautioned, planning cannot instigate life, only provide space for it. This indicates that forms and contents are not so easily equated or brought together. Equally deducing forms from contents proves also not to be that easy. What matters is clearly the level of reflection and this in terms of the social and political responsibility of the planner, architect, city manager etc. Indeed, it is one matter to design and to build a beautiful building, quite something else when attempting to bring about a happy life. For the latter the depth of human culture needs to be phantomed before coming close to realizing any serious perspective for such a life. Moreover this is said in view as to what Janusz Korczak reminded off when cautioning that mistakes in a school building cannot be off-set even by the best teacher. In Berlin West until 1989 many architects, social workers, handicraft workers and new groups composed of a variety of people attempted to correct the mistakes made when building that city up at too fast a rate, but then came the fall of the wall and with it a speculation followed by a building frenzy with all the classical mistakes being repeated and even worse squandering many opportunities to continue the correction of past mistakes. Thus space for correcting mistakes has to be given as well even if this notion has not been grasped as of yet by city planners.

Subsequently any mediation between poets and planners has to be based on such philosophical reflections which do justice to man's changed dispositions and attitudes. Important would be to show how they are brought about by a change in knowledge due to living in the city. This knowledge should include poetic observations. For once knowledge is perceived as being equal to a spontaneous expression of an intuitive guess as to what constitutes reality and what can bring about a change in attitude, then the debate about the 'Myth of the City' will reflect not merely the existence of different notions of life. It will also constitute what is subject to change during these times of an outgoing twentieth century, in anticipation of the twenty-first one.

Poetic observations appeared already in Parmenides' fragment called 'The Being'. In these fragment it is possible to discover poetic very much like natural scientific observations about man, city life and above all transportation, for when the chariot wheels begin to turn, Parmenides observes smoke coming out of the holes through which ran the axe of the wheels. Most likely there was no wax or oil available to reduce the friction caused by the turning of the wheel and hence of the axe, but as Thomas Kuhn would describe it in his book 'The structure of scientific revolution' man's knowledge about things improves by constant questioning by observations of concepts and vice versa. It continues along the axiom used to reflect refinement of man's knowledge. Thus invisible laws like the one about gravity becomes comprehensible after Newton observed the falling of an apple, and the visible in terms of knowledge becomes the base for dealing with materials according to certain laws. Altogether a refinement of concepts takes place over time as also life in city shall be circumscribed with ever finer concepts even though life in cities remains at best a guess and more so a puzzle.

Klaus Heinrich went in his interpretations of Ovid's 'Metamorphosis' so far as to say that even poetry anticipates already the organizational logic which shall dominate in future. For they follow the laws according to which society shall unfold, and this on the basis of these givens, indeed certainties. Thus to return to Parmenides once more, significant are not merely the particular observations, but his reference to the city as a whole, insofar as he remarks what difference there exists between the city and nature when it comes to unify the senses. For once man finds himself outside the gate of the city (and that is said in reference to such cities which have surrounded themselves by walls, towers and gates to protect themselves against wild nature and anything coming from afar but ready to endanger the life of the city), Parmenides believes due to a truer relationship to nature man's perception changes accordingly. He needs not to assemble anymore the pieces he has built up in the city for that would leave him at best with fragments put together like a puzzle and still not add up to explain the whole. By contrast, in nature man's relationship to himself changes with regards to what is now a greater exterior. It includes the unknown and therefore unification of the senses may come about due to the 'self' feeling itself concrete (compared to being merely abstract within the city).

This 'inner reflection of the social being' can be taken as the city reversing the man-nature relationship and in due course allow man to relate things not merely in terms of what he lives through and experiences, but also what is being communicated to him through the culture of the city. That is like the beginning of a lived subjective truth. How then to relate to the overall concept of a city, that remains a mystery, at best is subject to the myth told about this particular city and which functions like a self fulfilling prophecy. Thus while the empirical senses are spoken to by going through certain streets, underneath that tower, the sense of that city prevails sometimes stronger, sometimes less, but still there to be noticed. It allows man to experience other things than what entails a reminder of nature, may that be in the form of clouds above the city or else sunlight glittering in the puddles after it has stopped raining and the sun comes out again. Such natural elements in the city are easy to explain. They allow the kind of extrapolation Jean Piaget talks about when people develop models by which to experience and to learn from the world they live in. Certainly the model developed by man in cities is of a very different order and blends both man made and natural matters together. Of great interest is, therefore, the remark by Parmenides who sees the world of the city being seperated from nature by not merely walls, but by man having in the city too many memories. Before he can leave the city he must therefore turn the key of fate, and only once he has turned that key and thereby forgets all previous knowledge (memories of experiences), then he can step out into nature again where he experiences another kind of unification of the senses. That key of fate is called 'dike'. It has been maintained in cities wishing to use such keys that before stepping out, the door has to be closed again before the key can be taken out of the key hole. That system prevailed in Berlin West until 1981.

The key of fate acts like a magical component when taken to be the key to man's fate. As such it encompasses culture, history and civilization, as everything seems to depend upon having such a key to something man constructed and then has been locked away, in order not to be accessible to everyone but only to the one who possesses that specific key.

In that context the key to the gate of the overall city is most crucial as revealed by the story told by Stefan Zweig about the fall of Constantinople despite its sheer impenetrable walls since a little door, the Kerkaporta, was left open by mistake and through which Turkish troops wandered. The little gate had no great military importance and was forgotten, but it decided the fate of the city once its inhabitants upon seeing for the first time these troops within the walls came to believe that the city had been taken.

Today the gateway of a city is no longer so clear. Pedro Mateo observes what new dominance puts a stamp on the city: the cement factory and the oil refineries on the outskirts of Athens. Any visitor approaching the city when coming from Corinth will perceive immediately upon what the city of Athens is based on: not on stones and marbles, out of which was constructed the Acropolis, but on oil and cement. There exists no longer any ancient gateway leading to the greater portals near the Agora, but many houses crowding all the way up to the foot of the Acropolis. They hardly leave any space in-between. Seen from the air, these houses stretch and stretch up to the surrounding hills as if the city has become a burned earth with all houses looking nearly all alike. Only a poet like Pedro Mateo would distinguish when close up the older houses from the newer ones since the latter have balaconies with reilings making them look like eyelashes of a dressed up doll or manequin. He would also express his love for the street he lives on and therefore explains why he as a stranger still lives even today in the city of Athens despite all of its bad reputation about air pollution, noise in the streets and in general no where to go but through narrow streets and cars parked everywhere.

The dialectic between the parts and the overall 'image' of a city is fed by such observations which add nuances to what is after all a love-hate relationship of man to the city. The alterations in knowledge about any city are, therefore, quite often ficticious especially if the substantial problems of a functioning city are left aside and man only concerned as to what happens to him when walking through its streets. In turn it reflects partially the knowledge prevailing nowadays and in what terms cities are being described in. Most of the times, this knowledge remains highly superficial. For example, Brendan Kennelly cautions in his reflections about Dublin as a prime city of gossips, that rumours are quickly taken to be serious news items while serious matter is very often trivialized as if of no concern to anyone. The outcome of that transformation and false reversal is that mere opinions can pass for substantial ideas while the latter are silenced, especially if they promise to be a challenge to the way of life lead until now. Cities tend to cling to their myths and safeguard them against any further questioning. It needs more than Herodotes to show to the citizens that such a myth is but a half truth and therefore should not be used to propagate wrong ideas about the city.

Indeed, what ideas can be obtained from observations by poets while learning to distinguish the serious from the trivial, in order not to take mere opinions as being strong ideas, that remains to be seen. What are then really ideas about cities? Ever since philosophy has denied the senses as a source of truth (Hegel), abstract orders attempting to uphold a process of mediation with the immediate at the written level have dominated. And instead of 'dialectical images', the relationship between parts and the whole has been replaced by the microscopic view (Levy Strauss) or made into a case of the probability theory (Heisenberg), or even made into a matter with no clear identifiable subject or object. The latter was the departure point for Derrida in his "L'écart et la difference". Since then many philosophers or philosophical writers like Bachelard have tried to sustain sense perception by focusing on time and space as communicated best by objects like sea shells conveying a million of years. It can include shadows underneath bridges as painted by the Impressionists. And Klaus Heinrich speaks about the fascination for lines made once again visible if a house is half torn down and outlines of former walls, doors and windows can be seen on the firebrand wall still standing. It reminded him of the etchings done by Piranesi. All these elements, once observed by poets, can enrich the communication process with new imagined components to be used to complete the incomplete, or the ruin left standing, as it is imaginable to deduce out of the part, the pillar still standing, the whole temple which used to exist at that spot.

But Klaus Heinrich warned about the 'fascination for these lines' as it may well be the wish by the architects to rediscover the lines they once drew before the house was constructed and which had become invisible once completed. Only the half ruined house would reveal once again these lines but then it would mean such an annihilation from both the past and the onflowing present because it would mean rebelling against what has become an edifice over time and still stands three hundred years later insofar as buildings can easily transcend the life span of both the architect and the first inhabitants of that building. Thus continuity matters insofar as grandchildren would be able to discover the house in which their ancestors lived already, that is were born, grew up in order to have their own children who would follow in their footsteps. No one speaks so much anymore about the city having that kind of continuity as the flow of people means many more move away, alter their houses within the course of a life time and therefore the new is constantly constructed on the ruins of the old before even one life cycle has been completed.

Thus a difficult task for poets is to overcome this annihilation of the past. They will have to find ways and means to link through individual lives in cities to the overall concept of cities even though in absence of meaningful dialectical images there may be merely darkness or confusion, if not chaos. But if the mediation between poets and planners is to have any meaning at all, then in seeing how they modify each other's perceptions and observations of the city. Once that dialogue is able to spell out real differences between making life possible compared to impossible, there will enter into the debate some elements of truth.

That then has some direct implications as to what kinds of concepts, indeed epistemological orientations are to be used in future when approaching the city. Already the European Commission calls for 'holistic concepts' in order to underline the fact that there is a need to have again an overall viewpoint in a fragmentary world with no real connections between the parts and the whole. Thus the question is what alternative conceptual language can be introduced through this dialogue between poets and planners? What kind of metaphorical language shall provide the necessary bridges between real lived experiences and imagined components, in order to give some space to the utopian notion of a city? Perhaps a lead can be taken from how it is advisable to look at the painting of Guernica by Picasso, for it is wise to perceive it from as many different angles as possible, if the fragmented world is to make any sense at all. In the same way a city should be perceived from as many angles as possible, that of the poets and planners just one of the many examples. There are several reasons for such advocacy:



the woman who encounters her shadow

perceives the numinous in You,

leads the women who come with grief

and myrrh to Your grave."



"What is the fire you draw to

when you clutch each other

between the sheets? What cold do

you fear? What drives you near

madness, the jealousy you daily

bear? That tyrant time

sifting through the glass? Tell me

a story, not in rhyme

or made up fancy but plain

as the ash in the grate.

The windowpane rattles, the rain

beats about the house. Late

drinkers are turfed from the bar. Wind

snatches their songs, tosses it down-

river to the sea pulsing in your mind.

You slip your moorings, cruise the town."


"The City, 1 Hearth"

taken from Paula Meehan, Pillow Talk,

Oldcastle, 1994, p. 19


These is not by all means a comprehensive list of categories by which poems about cities can be denoted and intepreted. Yet as a first response to expressions bearing estranged descriptions i.e. forlorn feelings or else what alienates people from life, some remarks can be made as to how the reflect the culture in cities, whether large or small. Of interest is that poets tend very often to compare going through the city to a voyage, James Joyce drawing inspirations from Homer a prime example. Of importance is that voyage means also going through transitional stages. A poem may start sentimental, become emotional and then turn into a normal stance about life. It leaves one wondering where has gone not only all the pain, but also happiness?

Voula Mega quotes an important remark made by Borges who describes the "City as also the other street, the one we never take, it is the secret center of blocks, the ultimate courtyards, it is what facades conceal, it is my enemy if I have one, it is the person who doesn't like my verses, it is what is lost and what will be, it is the ulterior, the different, the lateral, the quarter that is not yours, neither unique, the one we ignore and we love." (La Ville, 1994, and quoted by Voula Mega, "Visions and Actions for Medium-sized Cities" in: Reports from the European Workshops of Alicante, Volos and Oviedo, Luxemburg 1994).

What seems to alienate most people from each other is the pressure to survive or more precisely the fear thereof, as if haunted by fear of failure and in avoidance of such fear becoming known to the other, develop so many hidden dimensions, that no one can grasp anymore what the other is saying or what the two are saying to each other. Paula Meehan begins that conversation between the sheets, and then what happens? It has been the strength of Dostoevsky with his belief in people that he could prompt his readers to be inspired by his books and therefore they would run out into the street to embrace the next best person coming along since all are a part of humanity, therefore connected and with empathy for this entanglement in love-hate relationships.

Given this fear, communication is then not a bliss but more often a curse in disguise. It can become even a torture if it means extorting real feelings even though there is already a long history of suffrage due to oppression, coercion and exploitation. Bruno Kartheuser would go so far as to suggest that the ones who have been tortured will be unable to regain trust. As a matter of fact, they will lack what is required of everyone when moving about in the city, namely trust in other people who are strangers and yet due to being together in the same city not really altogether strangers to each other. But such trust implies also the need for some kind of blindness as in reality there are many unresolved problems which people carry with them when walking through the streets. Therefore a kind of blind trust is called for. At the same time, no one would call the city as the place where permanent postponements take place, postponements made out of promises to do something about these problems once better days have arrived. Yet elongation of wishes may indeed force people to go through an entire life time without ever resolving that one basic issue besetting them right from the beginning and which made them take the path they took eventually.

In terms of perception, here the video shown by Bart Verschaffel tells the story about the glance. In terms of language, it means no longer direct looks into the eyes of the other are allowed or possible, but merely 'sidelooks', 'swift glances', indeed 'stolen glances' underline the culture of the city acting like a filter as to what is let through or in, what not. There is a risk that looks become empty and the other ones are no longer recognized as human beings. That would mean the end of the urban culture which mankind has attempted to create over time, in order to become more human.

The Berliner poetess Heike Willingham would explain this phenomenon as outcome of the city drowing in its own 'poverty of meaning'. Such poverty exists that all richness being displayed in the city in the form of car saloons to lavish hotels cannot dispell it. Not even busy intersections or expensive restaurants can make this poverty go away. It is confronted the moment anyone steps out into the streets again and someone stretches out a dirty hand to beg for some money. Heike Willingham would describe the city fore mostly as ongoing activities all aiming to 'strengthen life', and may this be the faster motorbike or else the women going to the fitness center. Certainly this one sided approach to life in order to stay fit never takes into consideration what poets would consider to be a sign of weakness, not strength insofar as someone has not the heart to cross the street in order to help up the stairs that old woman almost blind and alone. It takes strength and courage and heart to cross that magic line so often keeping people apart out of shyness, out of the false belief they have nothing to give to one another, as everything is under the wrong impression only things which can be bought and which are expensive, are things to be given, if at all.

When Henryk Baranowski staged Heiner Mueller's 'Hamlet Maschine', then he evoked a powerful metaphor for the city as a machine which makes out of people's identities minced meat till they no longer recognize each other nor themselves. The inability to retain an own and distinctive identity in midst this sea of people flowing in and out of the metro and railway stations on the way to work or back home means that people have to gather elsewhere the strength to contradict such a tendency. This is where poetry as grammar of life in cities comes in and does play a vital role. Above all this important factor can be seen on hand of many films and theatres adapting poems by translating them into performance acts. The Schaubuehne in Berlin West called its theatrical piece about Empedocles an attempt to read Hoelderlin who had written about this ancient philosopher, but left it as a fragment incomplete. It suggests that the theatre needs poetry to link up again with philosophy even though that has not fared well over the centuries. Rarely have cities become known through their philosophers (Hegel lectured in Berlin yet he claimed there nothing can be built since everything would be constructed on sand), but much more through their poets. That is especially the case once poets like Katerina Anghelaki Rooke become in reality philosophers.

Finally, the psychological implications of fear as alienating force makes some poets describe cities in rural terms or even they stay in rural settings like Seamus Heaney. Ann Borne explains why she prefers the countryside but still needs the city to have her poetry be published, read and discussed. It may amount in the end to a kind of dogma of believers about what constitutes a healthy life, what not and insofar as the city is denied as a possible place to lead a healthy life, justification is given almost automatically to this recourse to rural poetry. Seamus Heaney stands here for this poetic tradition which refers to much beloved landscapes as a kind of resume of what can be and shall always be so:


"Gloucestershire: its prospects lie

Wooded and misty to my eye

Whose landscape, as your mother's was,

Is other than this mellowness

Of topiary, lawn and brick

Possessed, untrespassed, walled, nostalgic.


I come from scraggy farm and moss,

Old patchworks that the pitch and toss

Of history has left dishevelled."


('A Peacock's Feather')


It seems that rural poets breathe again the woodland. No offense is meant, but those coming from the cities in their fancy cars bring a lot of empty noise with them. They spill that noise over an otherwise silent countryside. There is the music blarring from the car radio or the wild chats of those either half or fully drunk although it is as of yet early afternoon.

For people of the countryside they wonder about the city folk not knowing how to be quiet. Silence seems to frighten them. And they know that those living in the city have left the rural way of life for the sake of finding a better life. And they know that sooner or later they will come back to say more in their sad eyes what they have lost and never regained again. One of the most important indications is that absence of a glance along sea level, a sea stretching out to mark a far away horizon.

However, to return to writing under own terms no matter where man or woman lives, it matters that time is found to write about one's own story. It can be written first when only a child with chalk on the wall. Later it becomes a matter of climbing over that wall to discover hidden gardens and some strange neighbors who become friends for life once the task is taken over to walk his dog every day. At the same time, those who remember the rolling hills and the church bells ringing from afar will know there is no point to chase the clouds like the wind does. But of importance is in both cases that self forgetting to let in new experiences can take place both in the rural countryside as in the city. Self forgetting, the absence of an 'I' acting as interlocutor, can be the prerequisite to remember another time much better than before because it includes now memories of the future.

Such then are some of the remarks to be made after the conference 'Myth of the City' which took place in Crete during September 1995. Some amazing places were visited, some astonishing gatherings of people came about. Brendan Kennelly said after such an experience that he no longer wishes to attend in future just conferences comprised of only poets. He calls them experts of words (and sometimes feelings), who need to step outside their self-inflicted isolation in order to start discussions with others, including city planners, architects, philosophers what could help improve life in cities. Thus it may be apt to close with a quote taken from his book 'Poetry my arse' to make sure that the legacy of the 'Myth of the City' conference lives on:


"The onlookers grin; he plans Pythagoras;

the abandoned poem sinks on one knee;

Ace de Horner sinks into a glass

and drinks the sea."


(Poetry my Arse, Newcastle upon Tyne, p. 75)




^ Top

« 9. Moving about in the city and in-between cities | Resume »