Journal » Trout 15 » Down The Green Barrel Of A Daffodil [Iain Britton]
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Down the Green Barrel of a Daffodil

Iain Britton

Staring down the green barrel of a daffodil
tells me things can't be too bad.

It's spring and this hillside
is unbuttoning its buds. Further down

I smell the soft dark earth rising. The moist
grasses have been levelled

by animals, the tramping of people
the aftereffects of lovers. An Indian

faxed straight from Calcutta
opens his shop and lets in the first dog.

Who's plucking out the eyes of Gaza now?
asks its owner taking a newspaper.

A man hands out religious leaflets on politics
on family behaviour,

don't muck about with your daughters/
your maidservants/your oxen

don't publicly play with your balls.
Stand fast in the faith.

Be strong.
Wash your lips before you kiss.

He rides his hog up the hill
where his Jehovah lives in a fiery cloud.

Sundays are definitely for stretching necks
for confessing

peaceful addictions, for amongst these
daffodils, I hide from the sky's harsh glare,

the ghetto-blasting streets, the garden din
of gadgetry, from children chasing goblins.

I walk with a girl picking moments
to satisfy my craving, I pretend my house

is occupied by someone other than myself –
this girl for instance.

I grasp at chunks of morning stillness.
I manhandle her softly.


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© Copyright 2008 Iain Britton & Trout.