Places of Interest

Samuel Beckett


In Foxrock,
not far from the sea
where the trees are arching
flock fingered against the grey green sky,
a suburb where the head stoops
in the mist.
Black froth of the Irish sea
gushes between
Holyhead and Portmarnock.
Not far, not far at all from the sea.


Slumbering there
before long,
about how long?
Long – being a unit of time,
long enough to qualify as long
but before then
before we reach the beginning of such a unit
as a shorter length, a shorter unit
that has no name of it’s own.
Before such a length as long,
but longer certainly than short
or medium length
ideas had a way of escaping
into the warm cranny
the nudge, the nook, the hiding place;
the enveloping;
the reproductive gland,
where the evangelical and existential
reside together.

Alasdair Gray


Aye it were a council scheme.
1930s locked doors and windows in a grid
Streets known, ever known
inside words which display
referential difference;
muddied in allusion.
Memory places tricks on us.
A visit here exists inside too many conflicting
They’re not your memories
ye ken?

Byres Road

It’s my face there
on the Oran Mor.
Lines in lines on the bar front.
But I remember it was a church?
Aye, in Scotland, what’s the difference.
But the faces were ever unfinished
forgotten in a furore of ego
and an intrepid need for perfection
painted over and over
it’s nae my face ye fag.

Radclyffe Hall

West Cliff

Borne here
in tails, among sepia eyes
between pert mouths.
Nannied and nancied
Just the one.
Stock tall, a double barrelled unlikely gift;
ready made and useable.
Born here
in Bournemouth
the now classic invert.


Dying wishes for the
third party in a lovers tryst
a quiet, placated
She rewrote it at the last;
her will for the live-in third party
to be treated with a provision as
so fits her discretion.


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