6 Apr

Edinburgh, Scotland, poetry, journalism, public speaking


They arrive each night, these images of enormousness,
of sliminess, of sloth – I edge ineffectually, slither
up The Royal Mile – stuck fast between St Giles
and The City Chambers.

Beneath me steams a moist trail of screams,
as casually I squash tourists, flatten policemen.
Bereft of his wig, a lawyer gasps for life –
tacked to one of my syrupy suckers.

I’m blind,

I have no eyes. Just fat feelers and a viscous pelt
of clotted melt, of reeking goo all over me.
I’m just a big, gorged, blob – crinkled pieces
peeled from Edinburgh snagging behind.

I have been known to reach the Castle by morning,
to come up slowly to a jellied standstill;
before the staff tip me over into Princes St
Gardens, with the help of a crane.

Softly squelching,

gently munching my way into the New Town,
I topple statues, crush coffee shops –
level George St before sliding down
Stockbridge way, towards Fife.

One day they find me belly up in the North Sea –
quite dead. Parliament gathers. They’ll pay, they say,
to air-lift it out to a funereal beach. After that,
I am pickled, and put on display.

Help me,

pour salt on me, put me in a jar –
deliver me to the Royal Society – please, oh
I’m tired of all this. I want to be airy and crisp,
like a rose petal, wisps of grass.

I dream of being an apple in a French still life,
ache to be a window on New York.
I long to be light, to drift like a cloud:
oh, anything but this.

2 Responses to “Slug”

  1. thegallerygoddess April 6, 2012 at 4:01 pm #

    I am enthralled by snails and slugs… weird little things, they’re in half of my own art. Great poem!

  2. projectwhitespace April 6, 2012 at 10:41 pm #

    Goodness, at first, I thought “gross,” but by the end, I felt so sorry for the little slug. Interesting poem. 🙂
    I liked it.

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