Shouting at London (from the Top of Balfron Tower)
My latest spoken word piece, recorded exclusively for all of you in the highest quality possible from my laptops internal microphone.
This poem originated in a translation I did of the Lorca poem A Cry to Rome (from the Tower of the Chrysler Building):
Apples delicately injured
by the slender silver of the blade,
clouds ripped by a hand of coral
that carries on its back a kernel of fire,
fish of arsenic, like sharks,
sharks like the tear-drops that blind the multitude,
roses that injure
and the needles that pierced your veins,
enemy worlds and love smothered by worms
collapse on you. Collapse on the great dome
that smears the oil of military languages
where a man pisses on a dazzling dove
and spits coal dust
surrounded by thousands of bells.
Because there’s no-one to distribute the bread and the wine
nor to cultivate grasses in the mouth of the dead,
nor to turn back the linens of those at rest
nor to cry for the injuries of the elephants.
No-one but the million blacksmiths
forging chains for the children that are yet to be born
No-one but the million carpenters
to make the coffins without crosses.
No-one but the lament of the mob
that open their clothes to wait for the bullet.
The man who despises the dove must now speak,
must scream naked between the pillars,
and inject leprosy into his bloodstream,
and cry a terrible cry
that dissolved their rings and their telephones of diamond.
But the man in the white suit
ignores the mystery of the wheat ear
ignores the wail of the mother,
ignores that Christ can give water yet,
ignores the money burning the prodigal kiss
and the blood of the lamb on the beak of the idiot pheasant.
The teachers teach to the children
a wonderful light that comes from the mountain;
but what comes is the meeting of sewers
where the dark nymphs of cholera cry.
The teachers highlight with devotion the large, tipsy domes;
but below the statues there is no love,
there is no love beneath the eyes of hard crystal.
Love is in the flesh torn by thirst,
in the diminutive hovel that fights the flood;
love is in the ditches where the tillers fight hunger,
in the sad sea that rocks the bodies of the gulls
and in the darkest, breathtaking kiss under pillows.
But the old man with translucent hands
says: Love, love, love,
acclaimed by the millions dying;
says: love, love, love,
in the trembling tissue of tenderness;
says: peace, peace, peace,
in the shiver of knives and melons of dynamite;
says: love, love, love,
until you put the silver on his lips.
Meanwhile, meanwhile, O! Meanwhile,
the black man that takes the spittoons,
the boys that tremble under the pale terror of the masters,
the women drowned in mineral oil,
the crowd of hammer, of violin, of cloud,
will cry as they smash their brains on the wall,
will cry across the domes,
will cry, crazy in fire,
and cry crazy in snow,
will cry with their heads full of shit,
will cry through all nights together,
will cry with a torn voice
until the cities tremble like girls
and the prisons of the oil and the music break,
because we want our daily bread,
flower of alder and perennial threshed tenderness,
because we want the will of the earth to be done
that offers its fruit to us all.