Putting things together,

in order, amounts weighed up,

an intention

through combination, heat, time,

consumption and, for a moment, peace;

it all takes imagination, and unspoken hope

that amongst the fire and inexact science , the chaos

of need, something good might turn up.

Is everything not aimed at satisfaction?

Or only at a going-on-ness, an eeking out,

until a fresher, sharper hunger swoops out of the sky?

On T.V., a fluffy duckling is broken up by an arctic fox

seconds after the new-hatched bird throws itself off a rocky stump

following its mother through spiralling air

into a digestive future….

whisked away by gravity’s one-dish menu.

We are eaten by time, rehashed into another dish.

This kitchen’s never closed.


In the kitchen,

gran chops at rabbit,

a bomber drops its incendiary lesson-for-the-day

onto a primary school air raid shelter,

and curves back to Hamburg

for sauerkraut and frankfurters,

five star by all accounts.

With so many kids in the mix,

and so little future of their’s to live,

let’s cook up war memorials

along Wavertree Road, each one a gothic cake

be-spired, inedible, time-blackened,

all names erased, meaning scraped off

like unwanted food from plates.


Too much on my plate,I can’t take any more Autumn,

warm clothes lowered down from the attic-

knowing this is only the first attack,

then the wish to be dead or in Australia.

The good news gets paid what it asked for,

then leaves; my brother’s barbecue’s smashed

itself against the iron pulpit in St Matthews.

Who makes these communion wafers?

What is the recipe for love? Eddie

fights for the chocolate crucifix

and I ponder the how and what

and where. In Spain, there’s a café below

the balcony where she sleeps all day on the chaise longue

being what the other ghosts have advised –

A plus B plus C, just like in your pumpkin pie

recipe, in Pooh Bear’s cook book, that stained