This is a poem that I wrote last month to enter a competition to meet Simon Armitage. The criteria was to write a poem to a quote of his. I chose: 'poetry has an awkward relationship with culture'.


1. The Renovation

Rhythm was set in granite stone,
Until they burned it to rubble,
Like the greedy cynics,
Who tore mirth from the voice and smiles from the household.  
They are candy stealing, vexed hunters,
On the prowl,
Hooded with the deep, black of night,
Fed on desire and still they yearn to quench their hunger.
A thousand daisies bloomed about their soiled faces,
And they smiled,
With crooked, tyre track teeth,
That obscured sharpened daggers in the shallow unknown.
It scrubbed them upwards with syrup and sugar;
Their ample shoulders and tireless hearts,
Robust like engines that were nurtured to kiss
But developed to kill.
It filed their edges and soothed their tedious nicks,
Yet they ran an avid mock of pinching and pecking,
Killing and carving,
Until they had their own names ingrained in the stones instead.
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