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Archive for the ‘Ian Mullins’ Category

Eyeballing the Abattoir

By Ian Mullins

Wondering what’s going down
at The Egg, I imagine pushing
through a purple-painted door
to a cool clean air of peppers and eggs

pondering what they do
with all the eyeballs at the abattoir;
do they pop them in their mouths
and suck them like cherries,
or grind them to paste
and sell them as glue?

But at The Egg
there are only breadcrumbs
on the tables, cous-cous and saliva
and air so quiet and clean
you can look from the window
and believe the city
is a warm-cut potato sharpened with dill,
the table you chose is a dry metal spoon
there is bark at your back
and grass at your fingertips:

so when work-hours
chop me into pastrami salami
a dry, a mean, a tasteless meat,

I steal my eyes
from the mouths that cut, that cull
render me into fat

and wonder
what’s goin’ down
at The Egg.

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Every Man Is An Island

By Ian Mullins

I wish I had that disease
whose name I can’t remember
where the sufferer looks in the mirror
but can’t recognise himself.

Yes, I know how a mirror works,
but something must be wrong
with the light, perhaps it’s picked up
some alien infection
during its journey from the sun.
Perhaps someone else
is wearing the face biology assigned me;
I might meet me on the street
and kiss myself on the cheek,
pick me up in a bar and fuck myself
crazy.

But the best thing
would be to wander like a word
with no meaning. If anyone challenged me
with a face they said was mine
I’d tell him I have no face, I have no name;
I’m not alive as you are
alive, chasing yourself down the street
as though you’ve dropped your wallet,

but no matter how fast you run
you’ll never catch yourself up.
Call this a disease? I call it being free.

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Chemistry

By Ian Mullins

So it’s all just chemistry then,
my brain lies sodden in a vat
in a mad professor’s lab,
and one day he’ll change the water
to red or blue,
and all I can do is watch myself
jerk like a puppet
when my strings are slowly cut,
taking such comforts
as the profession allows
me to confess, only secretly relieved

that I am relieved of all
such duties; can pass the baton
to a closed fist, content
that my part of the race is finally
over and that the finish
I will never live to see
is waiting round the bend
for some other soul
to snatch away my glory:

so I’ll never need to smash the glass
and find out if my brain can leap
like a football kicked so high in the air
it forgets it isn’t supposed to fly
and hurtles like a pinball between
planets, faces, suns and stars

searching for a body called home.

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