2 Poems by Robert Connal

Mar 20th, 2008 | By | Category: Poetry

A sonnet on unsteady buildings

On homeward roads the granite houses march,
their roofs pulled low against the lash of rain,
their windows streaming sea-spray, rustic arch
and cobbled path fence-deep in mud again.
They’re drunk. The town is famed for drunken homes,
its pavements wet with whiskey and its gutters
deep in rum. Each tilted building roams
the wine-dark streets some happy hours, then sputters
oaths of sober dryness soon to come.
Then drunken pubs, with brandy-buckled knees,
spin, reel, and stagger on the waving shore,
shout filthy welcomes to the sea, and slump
to sleep in hollows under dripping trees.
All dream of beer. All wake demanding more.


The old chains hang above the stagnant moat,
where ancient creatures gothically float
with graveyard rags and bones caught in their teeth.
Beheaded statues roam the blasted heath.

“No, no!” the wise declare. “The time is past
when people could be made to stand aghast
at tales of howling ghosts and wizard wands,
and awful things that dine on feet and hands!”

The creature enters by the kitchen door
and eats the fools who say it feeds no more.


Robert Connal lives in Scandinavia with a beard, a forged Estonian passport, and twenty-three cats. He has often said that he was born in the wrong century. Everyone who knows him agrees that he belongs in any century but theirs.

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