“Total risk through global refusal.”
A Crimson Sky
A Dark Background
All Things Ending
An Infinite Horizon
Democracy and Equality
The Flight of Spring
The Hard Angle
The Terror of Neoliberalism
The Tide of Years
Wind and Tide
THE HALL OF FOAM
(after W.H. Auden)
The tiers are trammeled by the chavs:
This loss of power really smarts.
The punk is pricked by poisoned darts,
Grave angels inked into her calves.
Fanatic crow nocturnal goons—
The hands that frisk you fondle, too,
Provided that your flesh will do
As fodder for masked epigones
Whose noble arts must now attend
To backroom odes and party tricks:
These help the living take their licks
And teach the dead not to offend.
As cybernetic think tanks take
A softer stance on governance,
Apologists’ paranoid rants
Hit notes of feeling; mostly fake.
Our experts may deduct hotels
From taxes they are wont to pay,
But do they shudder as they lay
There, basking in historic smells?
With insufficient room to move
The water-fatted fowl awaits
A world beyond blood-spattered gates:
Its angel is the rat-like dove.
Below our ken, a pathogen
Has commandeered the nucleus.
It makes no difference to our “us”—
The present must begin again.
BLACK METAL SAMPLER
The wind whips through the trees.
A shot of yellow phlegm
Snakes to the drain.
Another hairdo is destroyed
Elastic over fist in fits
Of sexual abandon, which
Is not a synonym for white flight
Quite, though such transcendence
Is reserved for wealth
For which oil flows below
The greasy ground as on command
And water from the taps—
Unwanted manna everywhere:
Jawbreaker bagels towering above
The garbage bin in mounds.
Meanwhile an automated pummel
From the Grundrisse threatens your
Retirement: you elope with a bank.
You book a wank for several
Weeks next Saturday
And enter a celebratory sulk—
No punk left willing to profess
A foolish admiration for the Bolsheviks,
But every Ian with an iPhone
Has a hard-on in his ear for Burzum:
The Norse Blues-hammer, an illiberal
Killer, each bland socius his own
Anachronism; and if every
Politics a pact with Satan, why not
Get it right for once?
Design your own parade: I’m in
The bath with candles and
A goblet full of cherry linctus,
Training for the flood.
Cam Scott is a poet, essayist and improvising non-musician.