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While Poets Walked, Swine Flew

October 5, 2009

Porky Pig Looney Tunes


Pig: • noun 1. a domesticated mammal with sparse bristly hair and a flat snout, kept for its meat. 2. a wild animal related to the domestic pig. 3. informal a greedy, dirty, or unpleasant person. 4. informal, derogatory a police officer. 5. an oblong mass of iron or lead from a smelting furnace.

–Concise Oxford English Dictionary

Pigs have acquired an unenviable reputation. Their name is synonymous with greed, lust, filth and disease. Jews and Muslims abominate them as an article of faith and the rest of us aren’t terribly keen.

But it wasn’t always thus:

The Pig was held sacred by the ancient Cretans, because Jupiter was suckled by a sow; it was immolated in the mysteries of Eleusis; was sacrificed to Hercules, to Venus, the Lares, and all those who sought relief from bodily ailments. –Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase & Fable, 1894 Edition

And so we come to our friend Alarming’s (and The Whalley Range All Stars’) Giant Inflatable Electric Euro Pig:

Al's Giant Pig

Politely Homicidal is going to break with tradition and encourage you to swinishness (I can hear some mutters of “…I thought swinishness was Politely Homicidal tradition” but I’m going to ignore the nameless malcontent [Mowbray]). Get your trotters in the trough and root out some verses in honour of Alarming’s splendid Euro Pig.

  1. HenryLloydMoon permalink
    October 5, 2009 4:24 PM

    Consider yourself our pig.
    Consider yourself one of the family.

    I’d do anything for you, pig. Anything.
    Yes I’d do anything. Anything for you.

    Feed the pigs, tuppence a bag
    Tuppence, tuppence, tuppence a bag.

    Food, glorious food.
    Hot sausage and mustard.

  2. Polly permalink
    October 5, 2009 4:46 PM

    “swine flew” – ace pun.

  3. October 5, 2009 4:48 PM

    When we took our pig to the Taipei Arts Festival in 2004 they constructed a bamboo temple especially for it to lie in. They even made up a story for its presence in a city square – it was a gift for the people and when it left after 2 weeks of shows it would become food for everyone. What struck me was how even in a mythological/narrative setting the pig eventually suffered the fate of all pigs and got turned into food.

    We try to like the lowly pig
    The Vietnamese pot-belly is infra-dig
    We kid ourselves about pig charms
    Imagine them away from farms
    Although they feature in children’s books
    We gaze on them with hungry looks
    Pig’s futures don’t stretch that far
    Food on a plate is what they are.

  4. October 5, 2009 9:47 PM

    Once upon a midnight boring, my friends my phonecalls were ignoring
    To favourite book, Bravo Two Zero, I turned as I’d turned before
    As I daydreamed, blandly reeling to the tale McNab was dealing
    Came outside an angry squealing, squealing at my bedsit door
    ‘Must be someone wanting money, dealing at my bedsit door –
    Just some kids. No, nothing more.’

    ‘Twas the year that I turned thirty: office job, thoughts turning dirty
    From Bravo I had hoped to wrest some peace from mem’ries of before:
    Happy with a girl in Ealing, IT job and Artex ceiling
    Ruined by accident revealing, during a spring clean my store
    My whole cache of arthouse films on VCR, my secret store
    Did she find, did she deplore.

    As I turned back to my reading, hopeful of the sound receding
    Heard I then a snuffling scratching, padding on my chamber floor
    I leapt behind the sofa, peeking, predatory footsteps creaking
    As if some foul beast was seeking, seeking to do worse and more
    Seeking out my heart and kidneys, my liver my iPhone and more
    To settle some forgotten score

    Then I Heard the TV crashing, sound of teeth ungently gnashing
    And shrieked most unrestrainedly, imagining myself as gore
    Over the sofa came a-snorting, like a cannon-shot retorting
    Or a demon come a ‘courting, amorously to adore
    Reared a fat black pig out of the dark, no hinting of amour
    I fainted, there was nothing more.

    When I awoke the pig was sitting, through McNab most idly flitting
    Snorting with amusement and contempt not usual in a boar
    Then he set to grimly chewing every page, the words eschewing
    I shouted ‘what you think you’re doing? That’s my book and there’s a law
    ‘Gainst lit’rary theft, also ingestion’, but he seemed to fear no law
    He picked his teeth and nothing more

    As I stood amazed and swaying, wishing I’d spent more time praying
    As my swinish guest proceeded to eat a book shelf’s worth or more
    His tiny eyes suggested thinking, his breath that he had been drinking
    Something from the cupboard where I kept my Aldi vodka store
    I retreated to the kitchen, where indeed I saw my store
    Empty bottles, nothing more.

    ‘Your drinks cabinet needs stocking,’ laughed the swine, his voice so mocking
    That I scarcely noticed he’d not spoke a human word before
    ‘Let’s get out, this flat’s depressing. But I don’t like how you’re dressing
    Put a shirt on, stop obsessing, let’s to the West End and score
    You’re okay, mate, I don’t judge a man alone upon the score
    Of tailoring and nothing more.’

    Too stunned I was to start complaining, that it was too late, and raining
    That I’d never, ever been out late on Thursday night before
    Instead I ran and started changing, all events my mind deranging
    I descended, that estranging pig a-standing in the door
    Rolling up my welcome mat to smoke it, standing in the door
    Just the mat, and nothing more

    In the bus seat he sat flopping, his enormous gut near-stopping
    Anyone from passing to escape his perfume, rank and raw
    Half the top deck fell a-choking from the mat he still was smoking
    As he laughed and, crudely joking, lobbed things at the folding door
    ‘Til all old ladies and be-hooded youths were out the folding door
    Me and the pig, and nothing more.

    He took me to a club, Smooth Porking, said ‘keep quiet, I’ll do the talking
    I know the swine who runs this little place, he’ll let me in full-sure’.
    With a twenty slyly palming, in the doorman’s hand, disarming
    All his qualities uncharming, got us through Smooth Porking’s maw
    To a room where nubile, sequined ladies boogied midst the maw
    Of men, one pig and nothing more.

    What came next is fast retreating, garish, zany, shameful, fleeting
    All I know is that my NatWest card will never pay out more
    I recall, stood in the drizzle, piggy with his corkscrew pizzle
    Causing the tarmac to sizzle, then we did through Soho soar
    Like a balding input clerk and giant pig, we both did soar
    Laughing, roaring, nothing more.

    I awoke, my tongue dry-throbbing, cigar butts in the toilet bobbing
    And my skull resounding with the echoes of our happy war
    Though my sight was blurred and stippling, and the carpet felt a-rippling
    I saw books, from Proust to Kipling, stacked in piles of three or four
    Dickens, Melville, Rabelais and Poe in piles of three or four
    Just the books and nothing more.

    Desperately I searched my dwelling, first by sight and then by smelling
    Smelling for the mighty stinking musk of my new friend the boar
    But the swine had gone, departed to another life unstarted
    Someone who just sat and farted, farted watching Channel Four
    I picked up the nearest volume, turned the page and closed the door
    Just the book and nothing more

  5. pinkroom permalink
    October 6, 2009 12:09 AM

    Edward Al Alarming Taylor
    Had a pig and tried to tame her
    puffed with air and unreal hopes
    She’d strain against retaining ropes

    In warmer climes she’d safely lie
    and proffer a nipple to passers-by
    but breezier climes would stir her up
    and skywards find her eyes cast up.

    Then one day, in wild Montana
    a youth strolled by, armed with spanner
    and seeing a look for freedom yearning
    set about its shackles turning,

    loos’ning nuts to just a quarter
    turn that next great gust would slaughter.
    So when Al returned from Rodeo town,
    moorings only, were all he found.

    But way up Yonder across the plains
    a pig flew laughing, dangling chains
    “Thought you’d make me dance to your tune?
    Well I’m less pig now, than pink balloon.”

    And that was the last seen of that sow,
    heading toward the moon right now
    but legend says, on a quiet night
    big piglet footballs fall from a height.

    So the moral of this ditty,
    all said with the best of manners,
    is keep your blow-up pigs
    tied down

    and don’t trust boys with spanners.

  6. October 6, 2009 11:08 AM

    Impressive stuff from ExitB and Pinkroom. Alas, pressure of work is going to keep me from my planned Ode to an Inflatable Pig for a few days, but here’s a bit of porcine doggerel in the meantime:

    I like a little Tamworth pig
    I like his pointy snout
    I like his little trotters
    As he scampers all about
    I like his wiry ginger coat
    And sharp attentive eye
    He is as good a hairy pig
    As you could hope to buy.
    He doesn’t lounge about all day
    And wallow in the mire
    He’s on the go from morn till night
    And never seems to tire
    He doesn’t plod like other pigs
    He’s more what you’d call a dasher
    And when his time comes, in the end
    He makes a lovely rasher.

    Hm, I seem to be channelling Pam Ayres, better get back to the work I think…

  7. mishari permalink*
    October 6, 2009 11:39 AM

    This little piggy went to County Clare
    This little piggy went to Spain
    This little piggy flew on Ryan Air
    This little piggy took a train
    And this little piggy was held by customs officials when 50,000 ecstasy tablets were discovered in his abdomen.

    I get the feeling HLM has watched Oliver! recently. All good stuff, although XB’s ‘Pig Meets Poe’ epic forces me to come up with an epic of my own…sigh…a doggerelist’s work is never done.

  8. October 6, 2009 12:08 PM

    I discovered a photo of a Hungarian woolly pig in an airline glossy magazine recently – a truly disturbing creature. Possibly the ideal image to accompany XB’s splendid sinister pig poem. Will email it over.

  9. mishari permalink*
    October 6, 2009 1:35 PM

    Speaking of sinister and disturbing, I see Roger Moore has been roped into doing adverts for the Post Office.

    The ads are rather chilling. He always looked like a fucking waxwork but he now looks like a waxwork that’s been left out in the sun for too long. He’s accompanied by two leggy lovelies, doubtless a tip of the hat to his legendary lady-killing powers.

    Sadly, they appear to be the only things that are keeping the poor old sod upright. They look like they’re taking an ailing relative for a walk.

    I think the most pitiful bit is when the female Post Office workers plead with Rog to make with the eye-brow (throughout his career, his sole concession to facial movement). The camera zooms in on a wrinkly, hairless area in the region of his forehead which he somehow contrives to wrinkle even more. Cue PO females swooning (poor desperate creatures).

    The whole thing made me feel quite ill.

  10. October 6, 2009 2:44 PM


    The pig sounds perfect. My inspiration was an entity I saw at a childrens’ farm in Amsterdam. It was mostly goats but there were a few pigs (one of my favourite animals). One of them was simply enormous, black, so fat that its forhead overhung its face then rounded upwards to become its back. Its belly literally dragged across the ground as it walked. It was a giant black pudding on tiny legs. truly awesome.

    I never liked Roger Moore but then I never liked James Bond either. I always assumed I did, because he was a hero and everyone else liked him. It was a few years before I noticed that I’d always wandered off to do something else before the (usually at xmas) film was finished. Monstrously-dull, lad-pleasing product placement for the most part. imho

  11. mishari permalink*
    October 6, 2009 2:58 PM

    Sadly, XB, the films were a pitiful travesty of the books, which I loved as a teenager. I think they were the first novels I ever read where the hero (and I mean ‘hero’ not protagonist) was completely amoral–no excuses, no rationalising (aside from a brief nod to the ‘Queen and country’ blather)…it was so refreshing.

    Al has sent me a very disturbing pig foto. At first, I though it was a joke, like those postcards of the ‘Jackalope’ etc, or the amusing hybrid beasts on Zeph’s blog but no, it’s the real thing. I looked it up. Yeuccchh..

  12. October 6, 2009 3:14 PM

    Roger Moore is a natural source for Botox isn’t he? Don’t they drain him yearly to top up the shelves?

    Now it’s safe I will come out and add my name to the anti-James Bond faction here. I watched Casino Royale recently – the beginning had taken its cue from the Indiana Jones style of blockbusters but the ending – a game of cards which you already knew Bond would win – was tedious.

    We made the pig to solve a particular theatrical problem not because we are pig fans. But in touring it we have met some real pig obesssives including a very worrying man in Namur in Belgium who had photos of pigs in his wallet and who donned a pig snout before he stuck his head inside the pig. I’m all for eccentric individualists but he was intense in a bad way.

    There is also a pig festival in the French part of the Pyrenees where men win prizes for the best impersonations of pigs. There are different categories too – pigs in heat, pigs suckling their young etc. etc. I think it’s all a pretext for getting extremely drunk but I’ve seen photos of men wearing pig nipple vests. I’ve not been and to be honest am not sure I want to go either but never rulke anything out is always a useful motto ( or is it? )

  13. October 6, 2009 3:15 PM

    Never RULE anything out is also a useful motto.

  14. October 6, 2009 6:27 PM

    I jsut did a Flikr search to find a picture of the type of pig that’s in my poem, not that revolting hairy thing. And it gave me this:

  15. October 6, 2009 7:03 PM

    XB The caption should read “Pig at nauseating middle-class festival for children.” I didn’t do that gig but those who did came back spitting feathers about it.

  16. InvisibleJack permalink
    October 6, 2009 8:33 PM

    Hi everyone

    Not a swish, unfortunately, but something I penned in anticipation of the pig theme just a day or two ago. I’m away from home at present so will log in again when I get the space….

    Somewhere in the Pig

    Dragged up the cold metal fire-escape steps
    the pig struggled in my uncles’ grip, squealed
    its heart out and unhinged the thick black gate
    of the clouds until they pissed down buckets
    of sharp rain. In a narrow room above
    the drenched creamery yard the pig was tied

    to a long table. Flat on its back, tied
    by each foot to a table-corner, steps
    would now be impossible. High above,
    a naked bulb scorched flies as the pig squealed
    through its gash of a mouth. Mum brought buckets
    for catching the blood, dull like the grey gate

    in the yard and clanking the way the gate
    knocked back against its bar. Everything tied
    together in my mind, gates and buckets
    like the clockwork innards that drove the steps
    of my toy robot. The metal key squealed
    as I wound him up, the bare bulb above

    my head swinging in the warm draught above
    us all. The robot’s chest, square as a gate,
    flashed cog-grinding sparks, and the pig squealed, squealed
    as uncle Jack cut its throat. Sprayed blood tied
    us all together like puppets, our steps
    predetermined as the robot’s. Buckets

    were filled to the brim with warm blood, buckets
    were filled with coils of steaming gut. Above
    all death my toy robot took clanking steps
    beneath the feet of my mother. A gate
    had opened somewhere in the pig, untied
    by my uncle Jack. Suddenly I squealed,

    for mum had blood up to her elbows, squealed
    because mum was rummaging out buckets
    of pig innards, was pulling out the tied
    lights of the pig’s carcass. Swinging above
    us was the bare bulb, a pendulum gate
    that pulled our shadows and coerced our steps

    against the white-washed walls. I squealed above
    the din of filling buckets as a gate
    beckoned, tied me to predetermined steps.

    Jack Brae Curtingstall

  17. pinkroom permalink
    October 6, 2009 10:57 PM

    Frank Hampson, illustrator of children’s books
    had a strong sense of how a pig looks
    and in the second book, of Ladybird rhymes
    he painted the scene of Little Tom’s crimes.

    Yes Little Tom, the Piper’s son
    who stole him a pig, and way he ran
    Stout of thigh and rosy of cheek
    with a pig under arm, chased through a street

    of vaguely Teutonic clour and shape
    through which Tom tried, to make escape
    but the pig was eat, and Tom was beat
    and they whipped the boy for porking meat

    The image of pig remained
    until reading the Opies’
    this notion of boy and pig entwined
    in symbiotic rosy, swineishness.

    A pig it would seem
    was not what it meaned
    but a kind of pasty
    so I had to redraw
    the pig in his paw
    now pastry
    in my

  18. mishari permalink*
    October 6, 2009 11:14 PM

    Great stuff, Jack, PR. Still tinkering with my porcine epic.

  19. October 7, 2009 12:05 AM

    Very impressive, Jack! I tried a sestina and couldn’t make it say anything at all, yours is a really good subject for the somewhat obsessive effect of the form.

  20. October 7, 2009 12:08 AM

    Hooray, I got 100 recommendations for a comment on GU.

    The secret is, to get in early.

    All this talk of politicians: – I so rarely listen to the news, but I had BBC News on today waiting for the Booker result, and almost ever other minute found myself having to reach for the mute button before I became irrationally angry. It’s a mystery to me why people ever listen to politicians who say nothing more all the time than four-legs good two-legs bad (to keep on the porcine theme).

  21. October 7, 2009 12:12 AM

    What were the Opies on about? Clear case of pig-stealing, the lad should have been horsewhipped, harrumph.

    Oh, that’s right, he was.

  22. October 7, 2009 12:17 AM

    The pig so pink,so plump, so sweet
    Is there any of it that we don’t eat?
    In Taiwan deep fried pig arseholes
    Will test the nerve of dainty souls.
    Pig ears brazed upon a grill
    Can make a gourmet distinctly ill.
    In Segovia tourists just for kicks
    Take photos of the piglet’s pricks
    Stacked up high in butcher’s shops
    Like Segovian gastronomic outcrops.
    In Wolverhampton with their tipples
    They like a bag of deep-fried nipples.
    Jellied pig’s head? German cordon bleu
    I wouldn’t eat it – would you?
    The recipe’s a poem by Gunter Grass
    But he might as well have been cooking the pig’s bloody arse.
    Cooking these bits seems a very odd vice
    Why can’t they cook the bits that are nice?

  23. mishari permalink*
    October 7, 2009 12:27 AM

    You’re not wrong, obookie…get in early and say something reflective of public opinion. I got over 500 recommends a couple of months ago (as bottlerocket, I think).

    Apparently lots of people agreed with me that Gordon Brown is 10 lbs of shit in a 5lb bag and this government are irredeemable scum. Who could have guessed?

    You’re right,’s not the form of the sestina that’s the real challenge, it’s expressing something coherent with it that’s the killer…

  24. mishari permalink*
    October 7, 2009 12:32 AM

    All true, Al. You know the old Spanish saying? “The only part of the pig you can’t eat is the oink.”

  25. October 7, 2009 8:01 AM

    “The only part of the pig you can’t eat is the oink.”

    Not sure about that. I bit into a particularly cheap Mercadona chorizo the other day and I’m sure I heard something.

  26. October 7, 2009 8:48 AM

    Re: CiF I get the impression that by the end of the second page of comments people are more interested in arguing with each other than reading anything new or indeed even reading the blog itself. Can’t blame them as it’s extremely wearing wading through metres of other people’s thoughts so the advice to get in early is sound advice.

    If you are late in response I think you need a visual trick to draw attention to what you’ve written. There was a poster who managed to make his/her lines stretch right across the comment box. Couldn’t miss seeing it – that plus h/she had a bit of wit on show once you delayed scrolling to read.

  27. October 7, 2009 9:16 AM

    I was never a prolific CiF poster but I don’t even think to go there, now. The music pages used to be fun, but its the same group of people always there and whilst some of them were great (train-spotting, roleplaying, prog-champion Kalyr and OCD Amazon reviewer and general grouch Jasonaparkes are my favourites). But on GU I know exactly what music the regulars like, other than the ‘the band you like’s shit…band I like rocks, dude’ crowd. So, discussions are predictable.

    I think there could have been a few more interesting music/lit crossover discussions beyond the ‘would shakespeare have been a rapper?’ nonsense. But they were always sabotaged.

    And the books blogs seem to topple into off-the-point pedantry so fast that I’m not sure people read the original post any more. And when you do read it, you wish you hadn’t. I pity some of the writers, pressurised by the need for hit rates to say something witlessly divisive.

  28. October 7, 2009 9:53 AM

    XB In the spirit of jasonaparkes I have a list of comments which were made before you made your comment and which prove that you are unoriginal. I hate the canon of work that mainstream rock journalists always bow down to and I once saw Julian Cope in a teriyaki chill-out bar in Smethwick. In my rush to kiss the hem of his Siberian biker’s fur gilet ( a look influenced by Jean Seberg in Godard’s seminal Le Jour avant le Weekend ) I dropped my folder of lists proving that the Beatles copied Mark E Smith and by the time I had put them in the correct chronological order Julian had left to go shopping in Lidl. I had a list of 10 supermarkets that were more original than Lidl ( cont. page 94 )

    Is he still posting comments? A man whose comments were often longer than Des Swords. No mean achievement.

  29. October 7, 2009 10:08 AM

    Fantastic, al. lol, as Wittgenstein was known to do.

    I’m friends with JAP on Facebook, where he regularly updates with books, reviews, etc. His tastes are, as you’ve noted, obsessive, but I like his crankiness and share his fondness for Julian Cope (a rare thing these days as Julian-H gives up his pop sensibility for ever-less ambiguous agit-prop harrangues).

    I think JAP has phases regarding where he posts. He has several thousand reviews on Amazon (literally) but gave that up and now links through FB to another review site(the name of which I can’t remember).

  30. InvisibleJack permalink
    October 7, 2009 8:47 PM

    Lest you Dream of Giant Pigs

    The Ghost Sow settled
    her massive weight down
    on the roughly nettled
    far edge of the town;

    all of the sleeping
    (the young and the old)
    left sleep’s safe-keeping,
    and went out in the cold;

    queued by the dozen,
    to suckle that sow,
    and all got frozen
    so they’re all dead now.

    Jack Brae Curtingstall

  31. October 7, 2009 9:10 PM

    Ladbrokes has some marvellous things to bet on, for instance:

    Which of the following words or phrases will David Cameron say in his main speech to the Conservative Party Conference:

    Lisbon 1/5
    Welfare 1/4
    Tough Decisions 1/3
    Immigration 1/3
    Boris 1/2
    Progressive 4/6
    Thatcher evens
    Nanny State evens
    Depression evens
    Blair 5/4
    Mandelson 5/4
    Boom and Bust 6/4
    Samantha 6/4
    Sleaze 7/4
    In The Bag 7/4
    Drugs 2/1
    Obama 9/4
    Austerity 5/2
    Broken Britain 3/1
    Hard Working Families 3/1
    BNP 4/1
    UKIP 4/1
    Lager 5/1
    The Sun 5/1
    BBC 5/1
    Champagne 7/1
    Chump 7/1
    Clegg 12/1
    Scroungers 12/1
    Twitter 12/1
    Duck Island 16/1
    Bullingdon 20/1
    Eton 20/1
    Hannan 20/1
    Bercow 25/1

  32. mishari permalink*
    October 7, 2009 9:35 PM

    I think ‘Hard Working Families’ is worth £100 at 3/1, ditto ‘Broken Britain’. ‘Bercow’ is a quite fanciable long-shot at that price…I mean, surely he’s just as likely to mention Bercow as ‘Boris’ (1/2)?

    Are you a member of Betfair, obooki? I have accounts with William Hill, Paddy Power and Victor Chandler but I find I use Betfair most of time.

    Generally speaking, you get better odds because you’re not betting against a bookie but against other punters; Betfair make their money by charging a small handling fee for every transaction. Plus you can ‘lay’ bets which you can’t do with any of the on-line bookies…

  33. October 7, 2009 9:57 PM

    My other half has just subscribed to Sofa Cinema where they send you DVD’s, you watch them and then send them back ( or move house, don’t leave a forwarding address and keep them. ) We’ve watched a Herzog documentary, David Lynch’s short films and Festen with Franju’s Judex ( a lovely film , part The Avengers/ part Max Ernst ) and “the Devil’s Backbone” on their way.

    Curiously the researchers at Sofa cinema have analysed the choices she’s made and recommended Spiderman 3 and The Bourne Supremacy as the next films to watch. Are they suggesting her choices are too leftfield and need balancing out with a bit of Hollywood or are researchers not really what they are cracked up to be?

  34. mishari permalink*
    October 7, 2009 10:34 PM

    Jesus…I suppose you should be grateful they didn’t recommend Home Alone III, Debbie Does Dallas and a Steven Seagal Triple Feature…

  35. October 7, 2009 10:41 PM

    No, I’ve signed up to most bookies in my time, but never BetFair. You can “lay” odds as well?! – I look at their webpage and understand nothing.

    Yes, it almost seems worth a blanket bet on everything in Cameron’s speech (or is it just 5 minutes long?).

    Now I am back to my old addiction of poker-playing on Victor Chandler.

  36. October 7, 2009 10:45 PM

    I borrowed a Czech film called Marketa Lazarova out of my library today (they are going through a Czech period at the moment, last week I got out a Jiri Menzel film, and the week before another Czech film – I forget what). It says on the back it’s the greatest Czech film ever.

    Ha, good job I folded. I’d have had a straight against a full house. How wise I am!

  37. mishari permalink*
    October 7, 2009 10:57 PM

    I can’t really see Pie Face mentioning Bullingdon or Eton. From now until the election, he’s in ‘Man Of The People’ mode.

    Most amusing listening to Boy George use the phrase ‘we’re all in this together’ about a hundred times.

    Are we, George? Even you, with your £30 million inherited wallpaper fortune and your baronetcy? Perhaps not ‘all’, eh?

  38. October 7, 2009 11:28 PM

    Cameron is Blair without the substance isn’t he? And when you consider that Blair had no substance.

  39. October 7, 2009 11:41 PM

    Hmm, not following the news I didn’t know about this fellow Bercow. I thought the point was to find someone whiter than white to take over the speaker’s role, not the person who’d claimed the most money on expenses over the last five years. (Unless Wiki lies to me).

  40. mishari permalink*
    October 8, 2009 11:24 AM

    In today’s Indy:

    Irish dentist denies putting camera in nurse’s pants

    I live for headlines like this.

  41. MeltonMowbray permalink
    October 8, 2009 12:13 PM

    DVDs arrived yesterday, thanks. Should have responded sooner but I’ve been fighting off a hefty cold, or possibly swine flu, for the last few days. Anyway, despite my suffering I’ve managed to hawk this up:

    Pinky and Perky

    I saw them twice back in the day,
    and though their stuff was super-sleek,
    it wasn’t just that they could play,
    my God, those guys could really squeak.

    From I Want To Hold Your Trotter
    up to The Long And Curly Tail
    they just got better and better,
    no-one imagined they could fail.

    Cherchez la sow, the cliché goes,
    it was like turning on a switch
    when Perky saw her turned-up nose
    and fell for that pot-bellied bitch.

    In a flash the hit machine died,
    Perky went mushy and sincere,
    Pinky’s brain got totally fried:
    the final cut was a right pig’s ear.

    Well-slaughtered by the NME,
    Parsons said it was utter swill,
    dint bring home the bacon for me,
    squeaked Somerset’s Julie Burchill.

    That was when Perky left the band,
    (though Pinky claimed he left it first)
    whatevs, their solo stuff got panned
    and no-one cared whose dung stunk worst.

    Perky moved to the USA,
    looking for that elusive break,
    until, one Independence Day,
    he was barbecued by mistake.

    Pinky too is thought to be dead,
    last seen hog drunk round Leicester way,
    his finely-chopped body, it’s said,
    is somewhere in Melton Mowbray.

    Some good stuff up there. Particularly admire Jack’s piece.

  42. October 8, 2009 12:49 PM

    Touring is a swine

    The Ancient mariner only had an albatross around his neck
    Hindering movement on the deck.
    Sisyphus comes across as a bit of a phone
    He moans incessantly about pushing a stone.
    Well excuse me if I find these complaints boring
    They’re as nothing when compared to the business of touring.

    Google maps will put your rational mind in a haze
    As tortuous as any mythological maze.
    Motorway services lure you with promises of treats
    Even Sirens would flee from their culinary feats.
    When you’re done driving the Travelodge at night
    Offers you relaxation on a building site.

    On site the allocated area is far too small
    The mobile number given is the wrong call.
    The request for someone to help unload
    Presumably screwed up on the side of the road.
    The audience may show up it has been hinted
    Even though the publicity has yet to be printed

    My self-pitying, priviliged moans may make you queasy
    But Scott of the Antarctic had it too easy.

  43. MeltonMowbray permalink
    October 8, 2009 7:53 PM

    If that’s Hadrian’s Wall freep’s dogg is standing on he’s a big bastard.

  44. freep permalink
    October 8, 2009 8:21 PM

    What? Has someone stolen my dogg? Where is he?
    Wish I could think of a pig poem. Some subjects are just too big, like al’s mighty being that succours all who see it.

    Couldn’t even get inspiration out of the OED, but note that there is a collective noun – a ‘sounder’ of swine – that I wasn’t aware of.

  45. HenryLloydMoon permalink
    October 8, 2009 8:41 PM

    A Parson Russell dogge, freep?

  46. freep permalink
    October 8, 2009 8:52 PM

    Indeed, hlm, a Parson. You obviously know your dogs. He is hairier than the average. What puzzles me is that I still see ‘photo waiting approval’ on Guardian books (‘your favourite poem’). He is standing on a wall in Galloway.

  47. mishari permalink*
    October 8, 2009 9:42 PM

    I see your dogge on GU, freep. First spotted him this afternoon, in fact. A short-haired, brindle and white Jack Russell-ish beast, right? Standing on a wall? I dunno why you can’t see it. Try clearing your browser’s cache. HLM looks like he was thrown out of Jethro Tull for over-consumption of psychedelics…

  48. HenryLloydMoon permalink
    October 8, 2009 9:53 PM

    Dude stole my name…

  49. pinkroom permalink
    October 8, 2009 9:54 PM

    Pig or Person? Quiz Confusion.

    “Porky Pig was a pig what stuttered…”
    A chappie in my local muttered,
    “…Elmer Fudd was a fackin hunter;
    a human being… you fackin munter.”

  50. October 8, 2009 10:48 PM

    HLM Ah yes Goin’ South where Jack Nicholson appears to have a cold throughout the film even though I’m not sure it’s possible to catch a cold in Mexico. The extent of his “cold” depends of course on how much cocaine he’s sniffed just before the shot.

    Have never understood the claims made for John Belushi either. He makes Abbott & Costello look subtle.

  51. MeltonMowbray permalink
    October 8, 2009 10:55 PM

    Pigs are surprisingly hard to write about. There are all those puns and double entendres which I started off resolving to avoid. Then the absence of material revealed itself and I found I had to bung them all in anyway. Strange, since it seems such a potentially rich subject.

    True Blood on C4 was pretty good. Don’t watch it with the kids, though.

  52. mishari permalink*
    October 8, 2009 10:58 PM

    Belushi was actually rather good when he was cast against type and played it straight in Neighbours. Mind you, I think that was the only time he was cast against type..

  53. InvisibleJack permalink
    October 9, 2009 12:18 AM

    Just back again from a few days of travelling and teaching, my brain totally addled. Like MM I’m coming down with the sniffles. I’m beggining to suspect that one of our pig poems must be a carrier!

    I see some mention above of Freep’s dogg, so I will go out onto the GU in a moment with the hope that I might spot it..

    Jack Brae

  54. InvisibleJack permalink
    October 9, 2009 12:52 AM

    Just been on the GU poetry workshop, where I see that the selections have recently been posted. My poem wasn’t selected, so here it is anyway. (Not a pig in sight.)


    Through Time and Space with E. E. “Doc” Smith

    I never cared for a single word you wrote
    but often picked your books from off the shelf;
    I’d weigh them in my hand, peruse the blurb,
    but never brought one nearer to the till.
    Grease from my fingers, the arched secrets
    of my prints, remained within the pages.
    W. H. Smith sold my finger-smudges
    with every book I left behind. The covers
    made you out to be a PhD. Physics
    is what most people guessed. But actually
    you were a chemist, and specialised
    in the doughnut mix for an American
    food conglomerate. Your characters
    travelled space, cut it in two as if
    light was a knife through time. The truth is
    it is. Space, as you knew, was the expanding
    bulk of an uncooked doughnut, proving
    in the baker’s bucket. In the oven
    doughnuts gain eternal thought,
    galaxies of sugar emerging in hot jam.
    Though never lauded as a literary master
    your work was devoured in more ways than one.
    And somewhere, perhaps still, there’s a part of me,
    immortal in a way, my fingers in your pie.

    Jack Brae Curtingstall

  55. mishari permalink*
    October 9, 2009 3:09 AM

  56. mishari permalink*
    October 9, 2009 3:22 AM

    Guy Ritchie AKA Mr. Madonna has become my new benchmark for fuck-wittery…read this elegant evisceration by Marina Hyde to see why.

    To quote the man himself: “You can tell a lot by a person’s marmalade. My palate is really a fine shred, it’s accessible. I’m not saying I won’t test you. Because all marmalade tests you.

    He makes Madonna look like fucking Simone de Beauvoir…hail, Guy–King Of Clucks…

  57. MeltonMowbray permalink
    October 9, 2009 1:56 PM

    Rough night? Mrs M has rusticated me to the spare room on account of my incessant coughing. The last owner of the house died in there according to a doctor who came round once. A cheering thought.

    I’ve never understood the Dylan Thomas HLM selects on Favourite Poems. If the night’s good why wouldn’t you want to go into it? There’s not much point in raging either, since you’re fucked anyway.

  58. parallax permalink
    October 9, 2009 2:12 PM

    yeh same MM, I’m a bit porked when it comes to writing about inflatable pigs. Al, have you/will you/does funding allow you to stage your show in Sydney? *Licks pencil in readiness for diary entry*

    Anyway – here’s a poem that feels like it should be about pigs from Donald Justice – ‘Counting the Mad!’:

    This one was put in a jacket,
    This one was sent home,
    This one was given bread and meat
    But would eat none,
    And this one cried No No No No
    All day long.

    This one looked at the window
    As though it were a wall,
    This one saw things that were not there,
    This one things that were,
    And this one cried No No No No
    All Day long.

    This one thought himself
    a bird,
    This one a dog.
    And this one thought himself a man’
    An ordinary
    And cried and cried No No No No
    All day long.


    So, whaddaya reckon? personally I don’t care for it – but as a poem it’s highly rated.

    According to Justice’s Norton Anthology bio (1925 – i.e still alive) ‘his teachers included the poets John Berryman, Robert Lowell and Karl Shapiro … often compared to Wallace Stevens* in his purity of phrasing’

    *oh fuck off – this is crap next to Stevens

  59. parallax permalink
    October 9, 2009 2:41 PM

    Melton – are you messing about? Or what? Don’t even think about heading gently into that good night because I’ll fucking reclaim the night for you – for another not quite perfect day*

    * huge ensemble – sorry about the bono shoo-in – fuck, he’s everywhere :(

  60. mishari permalink*
    October 9, 2009 3:04 PM

    I dunno, MM. I’ve always rather liked that Thomas poem and it’s a good villanelle. And I can sort of see the point he’s making…”go down fighting”…that sort of thing (I think) and I think he’s using ‘good night’ in the sense of ‘fare thee well’ not in the sense of ‘it’s bloody marvellous out there, boyo, look you’..anyway, I’ve always had a soft spot for the old Welsh windbag. His Portrait Of The Artist As A Young Dog was a favourite of my teens. I used to drink in The White Horse Tavern in the West Village, where Thomas drank his last fatal whiskeys.

    That Justice’s a re-working of ‘This Litle Piggy Went To Market’, no? I think I’ve read a couple of Justice poems that I liked but set next to Wallace Stevens? No, no, no…Stevens urinates on the majority of 20th century poets from a commanding height..

  61. October 9, 2009 3:45 PM

    para, the pig has been to Perth but as it’s a show for small audiences ( 10 people per show for 14 X 10 minute long shows per day ) the costs of freight, flying 3 people over etc. put off most festivals.

  62. parallax permalink
    October 9, 2009 4:03 PM

    Yes – Justice’s poem was inspired by the nursery rhyme ‘This little pig etc’

    I chose it because I didn’t have a pig verse of my own to offer. Perhaps not the best example of Justice’s work (I was ham strung by the topic) – (and yes, I think the anthologists were stretching it a bit when they offer Wallace Stevens as a comparison) however, Donald Justice writes a fair couple of opening verses – and then spoils it with a need to deliver – so, if you’re not bothered by denouement, here’s the first two stanzas of another DJ poem:

    Men at Forty

    Men at forty
    Learn to close softly
    The doors to rooms they will not be
    Coming back to.

    At rest on a stair landing,
    They feel it moving
    Beneath them like the deck of a ship,
    Though the swell is gentle.

    I won’t post the rest – it’s all downhill from here :)

  63. HenryLloydMoon permalink
    October 9, 2009 4:31 PM

    Hi, MM. Kudos on the best pig poem, too.

    My take on the Dylan poem is that it is a valedictory shot in the arm, totally convincing to neither the speaker nor the listener, hence the poignant ambiguity.

    Given the choice, I’d rather have morphine, personally.

  64. Captain Ned permalink
    October 9, 2009 5:13 PM

    Obama’s Nobel win: my thoughts end up crashing into a big wall of WHAT???

    This must be a weird portent of something…

  65. mishari permalink*
    October 9, 2009 5:20 PM

    French Nation Apalled

    The people of France were shocked beyond measure today to learn that there resides in their midst a man who prefers morphine to poetry.

    The Minister of the Interior, M. Aristide Opéra-Bouffe said, “We will be looking very closely into the affairs of this espèce de con, M. Henri Lord Moom, so-called, of that you may be certain..”

    –Le Monde, Today

  66. mishari permalink*
    October 9, 2009 6:12 PM

    I can’t help wondering if they would have given the Nobel to McCain if he’d said and done exactly the same things that Obama has. I imagine not. The uncomfortable truth is, he’s getting it for being black or rather (because lots of people are black) for being black and getting elected President of the United States.

    After all, what exactly has Obama accomplished so far? Bailed out the bankers? check…and..erm..that’s it. The other day he refused to meet the Dalai Llama for fear of offending the Chinese. Of course, the US doesn’t owe the Dalai Llama $1 trillion…so much for Obama’s much-vaunted ‘principles’.

    Of course, I mocked all this Obama hype here on PH back in Jan or Feb so none of this actually surprises me. I wish I’d been wrong but I wasn’t.

  67. MeltonMowbray permalink
    October 9, 2009 7:12 PM

    Chillax, parallax, I’m not dying, though I wouldn’t have minded handing in the dinner pail earlier in the week. Not that impressed by the first Justice poem, though the second looks more promising. Funnily enough, Stevens had a bit of a thing about men in their 40s, didn’t he? If men at forty will be painting lakes… I’m sure it crops up elsewhere.

    I’ve reread DNGGITGN a few times, HLM, and I see your point – the curse/bless thing had escaped my notice – but I still find the whole thing too windy and imprecise.

    I’ve never been a Thomas fan, though I did spend a pissed weekend in Laugharne in the mid-70s, viewing the Boathouse while my female companion was sick in the bushes, then the Shed, which was quite disappointing since it was literally just that, with an empty beer bottle standing on the table in front of the window. I suppose it’s been flashed up a bit since.

  68. mishari permalink*
    October 9, 2009 7:29 PM

    Oh, yes…there’s a full beer bottle, now…

  69. MeltonMowbray permalink
    October 9, 2009 11:02 PM

    An unaccompanied bottle of beer wouldn’t last long in Wales. It feels a bit odd writing it, but I wouldn’t mind being 40 again. Not 20, though.

  70. mishari permalink*
    October 10, 2009 1:43 AM

    I’d love to be 20 again but only providing I knew what I know now. I mean…I wouldn’t just want a fucking re-run. Not that it wasn’t a lot fun but it almost killed me the first time…

    Apparently, someone shot Liz Jones’ letter-box:

    The moment she arrived in Dulverton, the metropolitan Daily Mail columnist and former Marie Claire editor, who used to vacuum her backyard when she lived in London, began syndicating her verdict on its residents to the national press. The area, she explained, is “faintly Amish” and inbred. “If men have teeth in the West Country, it’s a bonus,” she said, complaining that shop assistants there “have learning difficulties and have never heard of Illy coffee”. Objectionable neighbours were dismissed as “small- minded”, “bullying and sexist,” and crippled by “insularity, boredom or fear”.

    At last weekend’s Dulverton Carnival, a councillor entered a float called “Liz Jones’s Coffee Morning”. He sat alone and paraded through the town in a long black wig, jars of Illy coffee, rats and organic muesli on the table, a big “For Sale” sign at the back. It won first prize.

    Jones says she is bewildered by the attacks and insists that she contributes significantly to the community, hiring “a local gardener, tree surgeon, equine vet, two chiropractors, an equine podiatrist [and] a holistic shearer.” She is considering selling up.–The Indy, Today

    I’m the same way. I have my butler, Cringe, hoover the garden every day–twice a day in autumn.

    The locals sound like Mowbray. Oh, I know that’s not his neck of the woods but, still…whenever I hear the name ‘Mowbray’, spectral Deliverance-like banjo music starts playing and my sphinctre tightens…

    BTW…what the hell is an ‘equine podiatrist’? Is that what we used to call ‘a blacksmith’?

  71. pinkroom permalink
    October 10, 2009 10:11 AM

    A hilarious tale on so many levels. Here in Gasworks Green, we urban fringers tend to have an equal distain for the effete metropolitan and the hideous rustic, so this is a win/win all the way. Here’s a pig-themed sonnet – of sorts – in praise of their mutual discomfort.

    Sow meets Swine

    When city sow met local pigs,
    dark they sproke, twixt cider swigs,
    “Whome’s she thinks she is?” They grunted
    into their tankards, black affronted,
    “…Blowing in with fancy coffee,
    townie manners and Thornton’s toffee.
    What’s wrong with our Maxwell House
    (cut with drops from local mouse)
    and marked-up up Werthers, double-priced
    from local folk (alive with lice)?”

    She fancied herself a Flora Poste
    to ‘tidy-up” was proud her boast
    but Zummerzzet shit proved just too deep,
    so, “Please take me home…”
    she soon did weep.

  72. MeltonMowbray permalink
    October 10, 2009 11:16 AM

    Showing your Londoncentricity I’m afraid, HRH. I only have one head, whereas in deepest Devon two is the norm, with an uncertain number and variety of limbs. Moving further east conventional anatomy reasserts itself. It’s possible that those native to areas closer to Devon, such as Alarming, possess some of the attributes of those to the West, vestigial extra head, drooling etc. Examining photographs of him I don’t see any obvious add-ons, but loose clothing can conceal a lot.

  73. October 10, 2009 11:28 AM

    Growing up in the West Country I profess wide-eyed amusement at the Countryside Alliance’s attempts to turn the countryside and its ways into something no townie could ever understand. Round my way the farmers far from being the unacknowledged custodians of the rural landscape were first in the queue to destroy hedgerows by using time-saving mechanical means, were the first to feed their animals cheap shit, were the first to poison the earth through effective but poisonous weedkillers, left illegal gin traps all over the place including in our garden without telling us and so on and so forth.

    Liz Jones sounds a typical Daily Mail type to avoid at all costs but actually I’m with her on this although she did rather shoot herself in the foot by writing a column about it. My brother when he lived in a Buckinghamshire village was ostracised from the community because he wouldn’t allow a hunt to trample through his garden. Apparently it was “the done thing” for owners of the cottage to doff their caps to their elders and betters and allow them to wreck the place on a regular basis. An odious bunch who I guess we’ll soon have to re-acknowledge as our superiors when Dave gets in.

  74. Captain Ned permalink
    October 10, 2009 12:16 PM

    What purveyors of bucolic fantasies such as Charles Moore fail to acknowledge is that most people who live in the country have little or nothing to with ‘country life’ as it is sentimentally valorised in the Torygraph and Mail. Few people live on farms, even fewer hunt; most are teachers, cleaners, solicitors, builders, etc – they do the same jobs as urbanites, only in a different setting.

  75. October 10, 2009 12:43 PM

    Or are underpaid farm-workers who are, post hunting ban , used as blackmail fodder by those who do hunt threatening to make them redundant because they can’t be bothered to think of the many other ways of using dogs and riding for fun that are possible.

    I do think those who claim concern for foxes are a bit stoopid as more foxes are killed on the roads. Anti-hunting is a good, justified bit of class warfare against those who tell others what to do all the time and hate it when the tables are turned.

  76. October 10, 2009 12:45 PM

    MM you’ve been “examining” photos of me? Shudders.

  77. mishari permalink*
    October 10, 2009 1:46 PM

    As for Obama’s Nobel Prize, Glen Greenwald had this to say at

    …far more important than the lack of actual accomplishments are some of the policies over which Obama has presided that are the very opposite of peace. Already this year, he…escalated the American war in Afghanistan…

    …Beyond Afghanistan, Obama continues to preside over another war — in Iraq: remember that? — where no meaningful withdrawal has occurred. He uttered not a peep of opposition to the Israeli massacre of Gazan civilians at the beginning of this year (using American weapons), one which a U.N. investigator just found constituted war crimes and possibly crimes against humanity.

    The changed tone to Iran notwithstanding, his administration frequently emphasizes that it is preserving the option to bomb that country, too — which could be a third war against a Muslim country fought simultaneously under his watch. He’s worked tirelessly to protect his country not only from accountability — but also transparency — for the last eight years of war crimes, almost certainly violating America’s treaty obligations in the process.

    And he is currently presiding over an expansion of the legal black hole at Bagram while aggressively demanding the right to abduct people from around the world, ship them there, and then imprison them indefinitely with no rights of any kind.

    It’s certainly true that Obama inherited, not started, these conflicts. And it’s possible that he could bring about their end, along with an overall change in how America interacts with the world in terms of actions, not just words. If he does that, he would deserve immense credit — perhaps even a Nobel Peace Prize. But he hasn’t done any of that. And it’s at least as possible that he’ll do the opposite…

    Mind you, it’s not as sickening as awarding it to an out-and-out war criminal like Kissinger and it could have been worse…they could have given it to Blair.

  78. October 10, 2009 2:24 PM

    ODE upon the Giant Pig lately Exhibited by Mr Alarming to Much Acclaim

    Pig! That hast with thy giant Frame
    Astonished Continents and spread the Fame
    Of all the boldest Stars of Whalley Range,
    Pig that hast gladden’d Park, Square, Hall and Grange
    With thy pink Presence, think me not too bold
    If I should sing thy Praises, now as th’ Cold
    Of Autumn spreads across the Hemisphere
    And Plans begin to form for Winter Cheer.
    A Summer Pig thou, that on the Green
    Did spread thy Girth and form a striking Scene.
    A Pig of Outings and Theatric Fun,
    A Pig of Ice-Cream and of Currant Bun,
    A porcine Sight whose gigantesque Appeal
    Let many a Child first meet with the Surreal.
    But as the Season now brings Mud and Sleet
    The People have no Stomach for a Treat
    That’s not accomplished near a roaring Fire.
    Therefore, great Pig, must thou a while retire
    And spare the All-Stars from the tedious Round
    Of chilly Tours from Ground to muddy Ground.
    And while thou restest, fresh from thy Success,
    Lean on thy Laurels, preen o’er thy Prowess,
    While we at Home can blithely sit and talk
    Of Yuletide Feasts with genuine Roast Pork.

  79. October 10, 2009 2:50 PM

    Hm, tweak, – Mishari, please could you change line 16 to:

    The People have no Stomach for a Treat


    [Done -Ed.]

  80. parallax permalink
    October 10, 2009 2:57 PM

    In awe of poets writing pig inspired poetry. Love yours zeph, esp. the title – I’m currently working on colonial poetry published in regional newspapers pre 1850s and some of the titles are as long as the poems. Here for example from 1834 :

    ‘Lines written on the night of Christmas Day, 1833, on spending the night amongst Cannibals and Heathens, and still more barbarous Englishmen in Cloudy Bay, New Zealand, with an Anthem on the occasion’

  81. mishari permalink*
    October 10, 2009 3:08 PM

    Agree with para…great work, Zeph and everyone but as MM said earlier, pigs are surprisingly uninspiring (not that it stopped him, the flash bastard). I’m still tinkering with mine and am growing to hate it more every day..

    Perhaps I’ll pinch para’s wonderful title and write that one instead…or take Graham Parker’s advice:

  82. October 10, 2009 3:11 PM

    Al, you olde moderno flautisto de Hamelin, you. Next work: an enormous prostrate Trojan Obama?

  83. October 10, 2009 3:28 PM

    Parallax, thanks – I always think it’s a shame that we didn’t keep the Custom of using Capital Letters for Nouns in English, as they still do in German. It’s a great help for an Ode.

  84. October 10, 2009 3:45 PM

    StevenA next week an inflatable David Cameron which has built in vents so that once puffed up it will then deflate very quickly.

    I would like to make an Obama automata in a glass case that only does something after you’ve inserted an award ( no! not there but might be a possibility ).

  85. October 10, 2009 3:49 PM

    And many thanks Zeph for the ode.

  86. MeltonMowbray permalink
    October 10, 2009 4:44 PM

    Examining is probably the mot juste. The telephotos were not as clear as I’d hoped, so I had to use a magnifying glass. Your shower could use some regrouting.

  87. October 10, 2009 4:58 PM

    MM so it’s you that’s been making the noise in the septic tank all week

  88. freep permalink
    October 10, 2009 7:59 PM

    I loved your ode, Zeph; it had the true Wordsworthian feel to it. Swine-bashing in Grasmere could not have been more beautifully done.

  89. October 10, 2009 9:29 PM

    Thank you, freep. I seem to remember you did a very fine Wordsworthian piece Addressing a Spade once on Poster Poems… inspirational (ie that’s probably where I nicked the idea from).

  90. mishari permalink*
    October 10, 2009 10:35 PM

    At least my beloved Wallace Stevens managed a pig poem:

    Frogs Eat Butterflies. Snakes Eat Frogs. Hogs Eat Snakes. Men Eat Hogs.

    It is true that the rivers went nosing like swine,
    Tugging at banks, until they seemed
    Bland belly-sounds in somnolent troughs,

    That the air was heavy with the breath of these swine,
    The breath of turgid summer, and
    Heavy with thunder’s rattapallax,

    That the man who erected this cabin, planted
    This field, and tended it awhile,
    Knew not the quirks of imagery,

    That the hours of his indolent, arid days,
    Grotesque with this nosing in banks,
    This somnolence and rattapallax,

    Seemed to suckle themselves on his arid being,
    As the swine-like rivers suckled themselves
    While they went seaward to the sea-mouths.

  91. October 12, 2009 4:12 PM

    rattapallax – what a word.

  92. January 2, 2010 11:35 AM

    Kick-ass post, good looking weblog, added it to my favs!!

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