The Taste of Saint Nino’s Comb

Is this the way out from the City of Glee?
Where the sun was a juddering timpani,
Glass beads all flicking into a fosse
And clouds were white like candyfloss.
Sighnaghi was fair to a hoyden like me.

Is this the way out from the City of Lust?
Where I vowed and cleaved, and He broke my trust,
A youth wasted on penance and chastity belt.
Can’t reach forbidden fruit when faithfully knelt.
I cuirassed myself in dead monastery crust.

Blessed Virgin Mary, she gave me this cross,
And I tasted bitter wine from sweet grapes.

Is this the way out from the City of Love?
I have wished to flee the stale sinner and dove.
My wedding dress, threadbare and black,
Like missal and pack slung over my back,
Won’t be needed when push has come to shove.

Is there no way out from the City of Joy?
Where the walls now echo with clang and cloy.
Will I spend my last days in regret and strife,
And did I ever strive true to change my life?
I would trade His love for that of a real boy.

The Virgin Mary’s cross entwined in my hair,
And I tasted bitter wine from sweet grapes.

 

by TETIANA ALEKSINA & TONY SINGLE
© All rights reserved 2017

four in the morning

time is a wheel
and it’s bearing down on me
time is a wheel
and it’s bearing down on me
how to outrun what isn’t free?
i still don’t know what i can be

hope is easy
when it is the first time
hope is easy
when it is the first time
but not when bells have lost their chime
and not upwind the squalls of mimes

be my comfort
deadly jesus, yeah be my friend
be my comfort
deadly jesus, yeah be my friend
brake the wheel afore story’s end
my soul to keep and ever mend

time is a wheel
and it’s bearing down on me
time is a wheel
and it’s bearing down on me
stars like dewdrops across my knee
lacuna matata on the cliffs of scree

 

by TONY SINGLE
© All rights reserved 2015

GUEST POST // You Will Be Gone by John Feaster

My life goes alone

But it is not a safe life for anyone,
I just hold on to all that I can …
Try this or that, but I am a lost boy.

And when you say, “Maybe, I will read you
In a book store one day” …

I know you are gone.
I am a lost boy writing my life in a song,
And that is all I will ever be.

That is all I will ever have
To give you my darling lady. I will
Always love you, and you will be gone.

 

by JOHN FEASTER
© All rights reserved 2017

tavernacle choir

in a tavern somewhere called the bag of nails
was a bank of cloud, the lair of the bear
he chain smoked so bad he’d light the whole box
and chat up the fox working the bar

a wretched man, we heard him to say, was he
an astute man, we sniffed his way, would he be
if in tongue lashing’s stead he regained face
and chose to be dead to the ways of disgrace

“what would you know of grace?” he asked we
“i was once considered lord of the dance”
“really?” we asked, “could one fall so far off?”
then we laughed like drains as he downed one last pint

a wretched man, we heard him to say, was he
but a blessed man, we ought to have said, was he
a nazarene broke bread, bled wine in his place
weighed with the dead, and waived time and space

but wretches would not share grace with the wretched
so a lorry got him

 

by TONY SINGLE
© All rights reserved 2014

dream cense

the sky vapes with clouds
stars flicker like ciggy butts
i try to recall
everything i mooned over
but nothing comes to my mind

nothing except for
‘And know, whatever thou hast been,
’Tis something better not to be.’ *

* Lord Byron, ‘Euthanasia’

 

by TETIANA ALEKSINA
© All rights reserved 2017