DAY FIFTY-SIX – Ira Lightman

Canto for Radio 4

                          the nations of the union
scatter of the raindrops then pavement wet blocks dark
                          side streets,

                 the notion that the one

dry circle round
                          a Becks stood on the pavement
the bra strap flash in Borough, burr and brrr
clippers round a line

whitewash flicks the brush, asperges

by papers move
and move about

wouldst thou have a cardiac
                          at Cardiff or at Waverley
                          at Central, Great Victoria
                          floating, stuck?

                          bee shall graze the anther, nudge the next forget-me stigma
bushy flash of fabric
                          bind me with your Celtic hair

forget-me-nots a float of blue
                                        in wood grass
aspergilliform, a featherflirt of green

the circle of forget-me-not
by gold is nectar sheltered
                                        the circle round the Becks
                                        the movement on the gold
                                        dry like paper

union not one
gold standard then the Euro now
for every reckless borrower
must have been a reckless lender
beggar-not thy neighbor

                                        the circle on the pavement
                                        the circle in the blue five petals
                                        the light hue on the wood grass

harbour of the neighbourhood embezzler
                                                    union not one
vocation of the treasurer is priestly




Ira Lightman has been spending the days since the General Election making a Radio 4 documentary about Ezra Pound and Economics, making headway with a new case of “unacknowledged borrowings”, copy editing and proofreading academic articles about bilingualism, making songs, putting together five years of work into three poetry collections and being a storyteller in schools. In July he is making a Poem for Northumberland for the Tour of Britain, and writing a book about three years of hunting poetry plagiarism. In August, he is looking forward to sleeping.


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