:: Article

Three Poems

By Mark Gallacher.

The Poet’s Photograph

You’ve been staring that way for years
Dark-toned and deeply angry
But the emberred words you use have changed
More mellowed blue than chambered red
The act of looking back one long and deftly penned lament
Is there nothing in our now to celebrate?

Those paid-for blurbs remain the same
The sound-bite lines that claim your work’s sublime

I think that picture’s worse than a grave
And like the grave, you’re stuck with it
You look ill-weathered, ready to turn
About to deliver a killing poem

Well. Come on
Convince me all of this is wrong.

The Scriptwriter’s Last Scene

Shattered light and rain bursts
Rain clouds and brightenings

Ida Cassidy swoons

The slate grey tide turn, thrumming
Like underground ocean engines

Wind flares and cloud tears
Scouring the horizon

All your screenplays bombed
crap beginnings and bad endings
with a fool’s happiness in between

Last scene then:
A shoreline
You’re drowning

The waves scroll over
The waves roll under.

Sign Language

For two dead cousins

I never mastered the signs
My stubby-little-clumsy-little pre-pubescent fingers
Stuttered every time

You’d greet me at the door with rasps & whines
While Alec in the background, tartan-leathered, sublime
Ready for another 1970’s Saturday
Blasted Rod Stewart into Girvan’s stratosphere

Fools always shouting your name
The weather. The goodbyes. The
Hey there John! Howsitgawinson!
Exaggerated arm-waving pantomimes
How did you suffer all that?

I see the two of you grinning madly
But you’re fading into unrecorded history
Wait. Not yet. Hold on.
What’s the sign? What’s the song?

Mark Gallacher is a Scottish writer living in Denmark. He is married and has two young sons. Published in the UK, Italy and the USA. Mark is about to be unemployed, which is not the scary deal it once was.

First published in 3:AM Magazine: Tuesday, July 7th, 2009.