Issue 11 - Ernie Burns - In Praise of Losing

Pity was once an ugly word


The dead air of a roaring ear

The pulse and throb of blood

Listening to itself

Pondering its pressure


Now I am accustomed

To the shape of pity's neck

The ripples and slides

The allowed murmurs

Breaths and swallows

Echoing my own


I love this spot in London

The place where a stoned troubadour

Breaks his fingers on strings 

Thrums his ruined thumbs

Sucking a Picasso piccolo 

At least here that is what I can suppose

And that is why I love it so


I watch the trophies of this room

It is my room

Decay and fade

Incorporate dust

Forget which is which

Revealing marks of absence


I steal my existence

Steeled by my weaknesses

Not brave enough to grasp

A thread, the threads

That connect to kisses



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