Christopher Barnes – 5 poems


…The inside story was stubbed by (ink smudge).
Uncompromising pains should be applied
Scuttlebutting this. Don’t rat on mission cats,
Two-timing Marilyn Monroe,
Ride-taking her away days in Mexico…


Osbert Fitzhugh on Gogmagog Hill
Gave-away a sulphurous circumstance
That goose-fleshed in re-telling.
Two hark-back knights dishevelled
In shape-vague tussles. Nose-diving,
One unloaded his charger.
In twilight it flourished, snorted, hoofing loam,
Dissolving into effervescence.


…Norman Mailer penny-a-lined
In a hair-raising scandal rag:
Klan-intimate federal payrollers
Were driven to rub out Marilyn Monroe
To string out the Kennedy’s
Into a wacko slant, intrigue –
Garbling frames of ‘Communist’ double-agents…


Elbowing the necropolis at Conical Hills,
Skeletons plunk. One firm-holding another
By his eroded neck.
Our ditcher took relish for a skull.
Bowling it resident to crown the hearth.
A forbidding knocking tingled him spewy,
Charging the night till bones reinter.


…Intelligence tight-reined is promptly unwrapped.
Characters in rogues’ gallery diagnosed,
Fitted-up by (black ink) in Marilyn Monroe’s bankroll.
Troublesome rollickings to Robert Kennedy –
In the offing, trumpeting their fling,
All overblown by our agents…


Tonight she runs upon beating hearts.
Phlegm-rocking outbursts, grisly, cussed,
From dog-shake pubs.
Frown on the Southery Wolf’s gnarr,
Wraithing all boorish yokels.
Maw-slashed friars paunched him.


…Elbowroom in gossip rags
By smarmy transatlantic news hounds
Upper-casing Marilyn Monroe’s assassination
And the double-crosser at fault.
Winchell turned audience to Hollywood’s privileged.
Umpteen inuendoed the same…


The mere-lock at Brereton Hall is spoiled.
Something death-rattles if nocturnal boughs roll.
His blood-line haunters muster
Widdershins to shock-lack pews
In breakneck astral-fey coaches
Squinting the approach.


…Trading off your solicitation,
A short-lived march-past of Marilyn Monroe’s last hours:-
The New York Mirror reiterates
That Photoplay’s ink-spill on her hit-man
All but fingers him…


Burleydam Village’s flashbacks
Are unlooked for.
A brew-bullet’s headstoned
By the doorstep
At the Combermere Hotel.
In it glowers a poltergeist.
Don’t shatter it, that frenzy’s a plague spot.
The graveolence – black nightshade – squeezes the passage.
Aura’s chink.

Christopher Barnes has been published in various places, including Jacket, Poetry Scotland, and Action Yes. He lives in Newcastle, UK, and co-edits the poetry magazine Interpoetry.


About gobbet

gobbet is a literary magazine dedicated to publishing the very best experimental poetry and prose. Intellectual perversity and explorations of dark themes are positively encouraged. We are only interested in work that is progressively experimental. We want to see risks, and we want to see them pay. No previously published work. Prose should not be longer than 1000 words. There are always exceptions. Send 3-5 poems. Include a short bio. Send submissions to Work will be published every 5-10 days. We also intend to publish anthologies of selected work published in gobbet. We will do our best to reply promptly. Most submissions will receive a decision within a month.
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