We’ve knocked Jenkins down, must reassemble him
brick by brick, he was the only man not to be bombed
out of existence during the blitz, so they say; the last man
not to have died in the aftershock of the council meeting.
This is why I have decided not to be a poet, because poetry
is ugly, terrifying, it is Councillor Jenkins caught on camera
hurtling down Everest in an avalanche of empty spam tins,
frozen sacs of urine, to the sound of a Welsh harmonium
played off key in Tesco Gwent’s car park. It is not pretty.
Ernest Jenkins, composer of lyric verses, we learn
nothing from your death. There is something rotten
in how you chose how to live, breathing deep
with mosquito single-mindedness, sucking the lifeblood
from Mrs Jenkins, and that is why we are gathered together
to reassemble you, brick you up behind your fireplace that you
may burn, twitch and moan for eternity, and Mrs Jenkins—
Beth—will come to my bed tonight, wearing blue, and smiling.
Previously published in "How to Win at King's Cross"