Summer 2005


Summer 2005


<<You and your lip. You’re coming
to the sites my boy. Ten and all you
know is books. I’ll change your tune. >>

Bookie, they called me. <<Get two
bacon rolls, Bookie. One with; one
without. And a tin of striped paint -

blue and yellow. Remember -
yellow and blue. Oh, and a bag
of six-inch rubber nails. We’re nailing

electrics today. Don’t take no
for an answer.>> But it was no joke
when by lunchtime I hadn’t come back.

You should’ve seen it. My father’s face.
Like a rattlesnake’s trying to swallow
an albatross. My father eye to beak

with the foreman, in a calm voice saying
<<Ring the Police or I split your head
like a coconut.>> How they turned

cheek to cheek - like two lovers caught
in their bed as I swung round the skip
cheeping it’d been blue and yellow

murder and I’d tried every joke shop in
Soho. But here they were. Rubber
nails. And sorry Dad. No change.

Mario Petrucci is a poetry innovator, and one of the leading lights of the British scene as a 'frontier man' of residencies. Formerly a PhD physicist and ecologist, he has been poet-in-residence at the Imperial War Museum and with BBC Radio 3. His most recent book, Heavy Water (Enitharmon), is a powerful meditation on Chernobyl and was winner of the prestigious Arvon prize (



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