• Vol. 10
  • Chapter 06


It takes a few minutes for the kettle to boil;
and a few minutes for the houses to be destroyed.

You drop a few blueberries into the simmering porridge;
they drop bombs on the schools and the bridge.

I’ll turn down the volume, you tell yourself; too loud
too horrible is the news. Here though is a good story:

an actor with Alzheimer’s playing another Alzheimer actor
on a theatre stage. But how does he do it? You wonder.

And then: the military rulers speak ― they’re playing dumb.
“These are terrorists,” they say, “we don’t shoot innocents!”

No, just a bowl of porridge will do, I’ll not have toast;
another boat is sinking, too far from land, moribund.

Yes perhaps a pastel-colour drawing with pearly clouds,
gentle waves and angels or ‘my fair ladies’ on their way

will be an infinitely better apéritif before breakfast
than the early morning news bulletin.

Stare at it long enough you’ll surely hear the susurrus
of contentedness, to be added to your Earl Grey tea. Milk?

The radio crackles, bringing you back from your daydream:
you have to listen, you want to listen, if you’re tough.