Enter Home Planet News Poetry of Issue #6                        Page 19
                                   
Table of
Contents



OUT OF SEASON

Rain on the pleasure grounds
The creaking wind
Around the roller coaster rides
The grey waves breaking
On the deserted promenade
The viscous breathing
Of the black seaweed
In the sunless water
Beneath the piers

The wall-eyed
Stripper rolling joints
In the seafront winter let
The ageing whore on duty
In the empty pub
The grafter with his whisky
In the cellar drinking club
The teenage runaway
Gone grave and withered
In the shadowed booth
Of the all night cafe

The sad
But who cares story
Of a summer town
That lost its looks
And then its crowds
And just got old
And filled with rain

  William Corner Clarke __

MONSTER

The truth is
We were all to blame
We wanted it
More than anything
We had ever
Known before
Then let it grow
Way beyond its bounds
And killing it
Took everything we had

We knew
Our days
Were numbered
As the truck rolled
Through the town
And we saw the rows
Of cold
And silent children
Lined up along the streets
Watching us
Pass by

And sometimes
It seemed
The thing was still alive
And banging up
Against the sides
But we just kept on going
Anyway
Looking straight ahead
Until we reached
The dead eyed
Weeping ground
And buried it
In concrete
One hundred
Meters down


  William Corner Clarke__
PLAYERS

Just gone Two A.M.
The Punter
And the Stripper
Leaving the Top Hat gambling den
In a rusty bomber
For a little bit of ecstasy
While there's still
A few quid left to blow

Her furnished flat
Just off the promenade
Its windows cracked
And sealed with tape
Her dress hitched up
And then her haunches pinned
Against the damp and sagging wall
Fucking fast and furious
By the corner table
With the vase of faded
Plastic flowers
Wobbling along

Later
By herself again, she counts
The crumpled notes
Stashed inside a one eyed teddy bear
Finds the needle
And the blue moon spoon
Lies back upon the unmade bed
To feel the glow
Flow through her soul
Oblivious to the banging
And the curses
Of the nutters
In the flat upstairs


  William Corner Clarke__


RADIO OFFICER

"It sounded like leaves
Stirred by ancient winds
- And then silence"

Control said it was a shipwreck
Caused by a typhoon
In the China Sea

Missing for six months
Maybe more
Time grows distant
In times of war
My mother said he was gaunt
When he got off the train at Waterloo
- You could see his skeleton
Through his skin
Glowing with a cold blue light

Information
Received in Dead Sea code
He'd been sent on a mission
- A deep drop
Beneath all reach of sonar waves
A response to certain
Radio transmissions
Coming from an unknown source
Somewhere along the Pacific Rim

It seemed there were indications
Of forces massing on the edge of Time
- Basically the end
Of everything we knew
Action was critical
Across the world engines of memory
Were shutting down

Looked at coldly now
It may have been just another sideshow
Of some eternal interstellar game
Far beyond the range
Of human comprehension
And it's hard to say
Whether it was ever
Really won or lost

On his return
For a while he still moved
In the light of day
But the darkness
That he'd fought against
Had entered through his eyes
And grew silently within

He became a stranger
To all who knew him, a recluse
In an old house
On an ordinary street
In a seedy seaside town
Long, shoulder length white hair
A shabby dressing gown

As a child I saw him once
A hunched and hidden figure
Cleaning his service revolver
At the kitchen table
As a thin pale wife
With oyster eyes
By the name of Hilda Pin
Ghosted from room to room

He had a hobby
Making detailed models
Of clipper ships
In his discarded whisky bottles
But though it was said
The house was searched
From chimney to the ground
After he had gone
None of them were ever found

I don't remember going back again
And when I heard that he had died
I wasn't even sure
That he had ever really
Lived at all
Except inside that other land
And is there still
Reached only
On some lost wave band


  William Corner Clarke__