Out of Form
My fault’s too much order —
always straining to see
round the next corner,
off flies the poetry.
Hatch don’t forge says my guru with a smile.
Maybe I should take up singing
in the mountains, or listen to silence for a while —
skip the next turn, let missing
lines run free... Look, dammit, less than one minute:
Tap tap, curate’s egg, curtal sonnet
They come with bush country
down under, where the free expanses
are veiled in blue and the Murray
slows to a trickle.
At this age it’s a no-compete
in the Kingdom of Flaunt,
but when Hackett meets Calvin’s old
“close-hold” style — straight knock-out.
I dance like a butterfly since.
For Shi Tao, in a Chinese Prison
Your Book of the Dead poems, online
their skin still gives off heat, as I
turn that gun from your ear, count
down each year by one line,
like a shaman spell syllable-by-
syllable a sympathetic
magic stronger than painted aurochs,
terracotta regiments, olympic
circles, to lift your flame from live
burial (“Come forth!”) before this sentence ends.
John Weston has poems in various magazines and journals. His work has been anthologised by Shoestring Press (Take Five, 2004). He won the Peterloo Open Competition in 2004. His first collection Chasing the Hoopoe (Peterloo) came out in 2005. He chairs The Poetry School.