Documentary Patter in the Pub

Dylan Madden | 29 March 2018



Stately, thin, self-conscious, he has paused.

Then, while I gulp my aluminium pint,

He summons back an erstwhile-truant speech:


'A hink a heard somewhere

That by any metric

Ye could pull oot



Skeletal structure,

Whatever ye want)


Rex is closer

Tae the sparrow

Thin the agéd stegosaurus.

Fuckin’ mental, eh?'


The statement served his purpose; stopped a gap

In conversation, made things smooth for him.

For me it brought to full fruition at last

An awkward thought, unacknowledged, idle.

For months, at least, it was coming into being.

Fed by the films of pyroclastic flow,
The stranded glaciers waiting to be rain,

The stellar cores adorned with radial flame,

And the knowledge that the first and loudest howl

Persists between the digits on the dial.

I thought (and almost said) that heaven and earth,

All that is, seen and unseen,

Is mouthing, perhaps whispering,

One report, for some a stern encouragement,

For me a threat, obscene prelude to neverending war:

'You and all of yours are young and new,

And always shall be so, compared to us,

The writers of imperishable law.'


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