Two Poems

David Harsent

Feverish

After Yannis Ritsos

Small squares on the move, merging, pulling apart,
building bricks unbuilding, a city of windows inside
a city of windows, everything hanging
on two right-angles, free-standing, out of whack
but somehow holding, somehow safe you decide
at the very moment they crack and start
to collapse (in utter silence) all of a heap
where three fleabitten dogs set off at an easy lope
going first through one small square
then another, and etcetera, the scent of the alien dead
ripe in their nostrils . . . and now they head
for the far end, as far back, as far down as you dare,
where a naked woman holds up
to the looking glass, still weeping, a skinless hare.

Here Is the News

After Yannis Ritsos

Red-tops, revolts, denials, discoveries, deaths,
dust and darkness and sweat

The all-night
pharmacy, a ladder climbing to meet . . .

Usury, murder, pi-dogs, whores,
prisons, a creeping sea-fret, muggings,
beggars, the blind, blind beggars, bad odour, bad laws

A guitar,
the tree, the streetlamp, the hangings

In the space
between two tall chimneys, a single star

Thank you

The key to my door is in the usual place