Archives for category: Acrostic

Earth copped a moon boon
As if chopper-parented
Rough-hewn and porous
Loose chips colluding
Year length chosen by dice roll

What becomes of rock
After suns depart?
Radio activity
Night-vision goggles
Infrared panic
North east west south empty threats
Going nowhere fast

Rapidly cooling
A grand exothermic waste
Deposit paid back
Aeons in the black
Red a fever memory


On the lilac lino lay the shredded guinea pig Chapples. Purring,
prancing and pawing at chunks of Chapples was The Protocols of
the Elders of Zion. Vyv stood authoritatively in the doorway,
obstructing the kids’ access to the crime scene. The cat has just
made a mess, she cooed to them, gagging. Naughty cat! Gag. He’s
ever so. Gag. Naughty. Gag. From behind Vyv came a long, low mewl,
the appalling, sexy gloat of a tom with blood in its nostrils. Get
ready for bed, Vyv said flatly enough to convey she meant it. Send
your grandad down, Stephen. Send your bloody grandad down!

Arf descended with an exaggerated clomp. It’s the middle of the
night, woman. Dad, The Protocols of the Elders of Zion has gone
doolally tap. Look, there’s guinea pig bits under the fridge. Gag.

Vyv left Arf to it. She flumped into the threadbare armchair and
itched, muscles creaking like baked leather inside her wrist. In a
small way she was relieved to see Chapples go. He was brought in to
introduce the kids to death, after all – a grim yet necessary office
originally bestowed upon The Protocols of the Elders of Zion,
now in his thirty-third year according to the extant documentation.

Still, this was no way to go. There would be no shoebox. No garden
corner. Just kindly obfuscation, a call to Environmental Health, an
identical guinea pig perhaps. She’d hoped for a peaceful death; this,
essentially, was a pointless one. Vyv lit a bent superking and tried
not to let Chapples-bits dominate her mind’s eyeline. She heard
choking. The Protocols of the Elders of Zion appeared at her feet,
extruding from his wretched throat what appeared to be a human eye.

Spillane and her companion zig-zagged from the rendezvous
in a state of exhausted, looping shock. Their lavish aspirations
now in shreds, they stumbled arduously back towards reality as
gurning demons loomed and boomed in the gloamy murk. How
awkwardly they had conducted themselves before that squalid
panel; how ineptly Spillane had conveyed her masterplan. Her
oratory had agitated the adjutant into a state of simmering fury,
ruddy and rude in the red fireplace flush. “First-page fireworks,”
estimated Spillane, “cut no mustard in the current climate.”

Jeer all you wish, child; mock and curse and damn. We are
impervious to your crude juvenilia. You are eclipsed by our
achievements and your idiot throat is mute. Our palaces will
never disintegrate, certainly not at your feeble hand. At your
gatherings you dissect us, while your own ignoble animality
slumps languid on the chaise longue, gazing dumbly at the
underside of a shiny metal tin, unthreatened with surgery.

Perhaps you think yourself unfeatured in this bestiary; you
rob your sense of its dignity by such an assumption. Where
once we flourished you now flounder, your lazy envy become
vicious jealousy, your purling bile boiled pure. What exists
in your image, youth? Our masonry is unimprovable and our
nascency irrepressible. The earth shall mark us even as you
crumble to silt in its crust. We are your ancestors, we are
evil and good, and you have nobody to blame but yourself.

Flyovers, underpasses, subways, dual carriageways, elevated
roads, footbridges, complex interlocking junctions. Back then
even drainage and markings fell within my purview. There was
nothing more gratifying than peeling stencil from tarmac, my
colleague Oyelayo having done her spraying bit, to step back,
hands on cheeks and mouth gaping in wonder. Our boxy little
LOOK LEFTs and LOOK RIGHTs drew quiet gasps of dumb awe
at pedestrian crossings. In a single shift we laid seventy-eight
variations on SLOW; the thirty-three three-eyed ARAFs were
enough to cement our legend in the field. All done on computers
nowadays, of course. The last I heard from Oyelayo she was
down in the Dangs chipping gum off the footways. I’m currently
engaged in dialogue with el-Sisi’s people concerning my just
restoration. I am Rameses CLVII, by Ra, and I am no pretender!

As you know, Graham, I hold your opinion in the highest regard
when dialogue bends to issues renal, but demonstrable in two
ways is your undiluted wrongness on the question of Dr Spaven.
Is this the revivification of your substance abuse? A cold echo
from some distant, pulsating unrest? How in the James Nesbitt
has it come to this? I trust your liaisons with Nurse Codreanu
have at least ceased. Please sit down, you can fetch your insulin
after the meeting. Your report, Graham, is the matter at hand.
Øyvind Spaven is the best renal calculist going, yet you argue,
and I quote, “Spaven, Spaven, blind, mistaken; kidney stoner,
chicken boner”. Defamatory guff, inflammatory bluff, bilious rot.
You further imply Øyvind’s employment to result from a quota
system – a rankly xenophobic comment which betrays your lack
of… for goodness’ sake, Graham, there’s no need for language.

Search parties had been assembled and dispatched for less,
however optimistically the official presented. The whereabouts
of the regional manager had been unknown for five days, and
regional had been the initial concern for his wellbeing. Yet sure
enough, his earnest, wonky family had harried the nationals
daily until finally, this morning, the pointillised face of Qutaibah
ibn al-Qasim lay motionless and unreadable on the breakfast
tables of the populace. He’s browsing the broadsheets over
camomile and crumpets in my attic as I write. “Another week,”
he says, “and I’ll have Hassan purchase a voice changer.”