A Very St Clement Christmas
Angel, we’ve ground enough black pepper into eyes,
peeled sufficient stinging onions, chopped then wept,
guzzled gripe water; enough for times two lifetimes yet.
Waken dreamings of a love that could be saved
then imagine our river where we might bathe.
Darling, we blitzed enough humbug soup to choke on,
trampled a million sour grapes beneath our vinegar feet;
quit smoking long enough to watch our cravings retreat.
Spark up feelings of a love that should be saved
Now walk with me to the river, help me bathe.
Crush, we played many piss-poor games, stray passes,
chested filthy balls, been shot at hard, in the face,
took cards for the team enough, flattered to deceive.
Weep tears for a love that we both should grieve
hold hands by the river, we’ll caress and bathe.
Lover, sufficient dark shadows grew in darkening looks,
mascara running fast enough to win Olympic gold
while cheering crowds watch us grow ever more cold.
Recline in warmth of a love we might yet save
when we sit by the river, mellowed and bathe.
Fools…we wrote enough black words into blacker books,
squinted at miniature print, as with immaturing cries
year upon year age dimmed our sight strained eyes.
Let the scales fall, see what must be saved
Bend with me in the river, kiss and bathe.
Precious, we wasted time, always ever giving not living,
chewed other people’s grizzle, swept up the crumbs
of toe rags, bearded hags, plastic bag crusted scum.
But here come such moments to love and save
Now join me in the river, embrace and bathe.
Cherished, we’re bleeding hearts hugging missing links,
printing labels for children, papering over cracks
in damp classrooms that stink of the care they lack.
Teach me to count in love that we shall save
stroke me in the river, we’ll enter and bathe.
Beauty, will we soon tire of excuses for being used?
Lose acquired taste for dry-white turkey gobbled meat,
sucking fluff-muffled bits from between sticky teeth?
When we gaze in wonder at what might be saved
We’ll dive into the river, come together to bathe.
Beloved, too long we’re hunted, tracked by jealous dogs,
chained to cold blooded moons. Those come-too-quicks
scent freedoms to think; trap us with their sleeping sick.
Conceal our trails with its welcoming waves,
we’ll entwine in the river, enter and bathe.
Sweetheart, conjured murky visions won’t thaw iced hearts.
Slow motioned freeze-dried dreams; every ill word,
every message replayed reverbs in whispers heard.
Love’s sun will melt passion deserved of saving
throw ourselves into the river, rejoice in bathing.
My love, have we left enough time to sing our own song?
Or is her distance too great, ticking cruel seconds beyond
her rhythm, gone her rhymes to where we can’t belong?
One day she might show us her kindest face
plunge into her rivers, to surface and bathe.
Oh baby, you fret nights that the cards cannot come
this Christmas or next, perhaps any hope will cool,
remembered fevers and passions may no longer rule
but peace now, love, be still: tomorrow we will be saved.
We’ll drink again at the river, to quench and bathe.