Two Poems

Tom Paulin

From that state of chassis
to those two poets
– both theorists of chaos
at Princeton
– a name that goes with Einstein
– from that apparently random state
almost void almost without form
though it doesn’t know it
we might just start
to draw drip or pour
a kind of crooked trickled line
– its grease
or toil of grace
could be glimpsed out on the Net
strong wide deep long
cunt and womb
a tough nut

– that grace’s chancy power
dancing out a pattern
isn’t simply the oul
woundup ticktock
and wire spectacles of the argument from design
its Godgiven architrave
but instead a fold in space
shaped a bit like a dhow
– not Noah’s ark
an Arab prow
that’s slanted on a rising wave
and made up of wind hailstones rubble shlock
whoop and whow
and a lost golfball
that rolls about this tinpot universe
which owes more to the genius
of Herr Professor Möbius
than we might guess
made up as it is of energy matter ’n
coul
infinite volumes of gas

Kingstown Saint Vincent

– piece of paper that’s been wet then dried
it’s a different texture – rougher
a bit like a voice from the other side
or the ricochet of a chough’s
cry or the way a voice might move
from lettuce to rocket
– still a green leaf but peppery tougher

I feel it folded in my pocket
and know it’s dull – dull and stained –
that I’ve written your address on it
and that more much much more is giving me pain
– just touching it is like finding a letter – a love
or a personal letter blowing down the street
so that it feels used dirty torn open
like a cross between a bus ticket’s
square of grey print and an unfinished sonnet