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Fridge Poetry

Have you come across this grown-up's version of those magnetic alphabets for little kids, designed for refrigerator doors? They've capitalised on our idle instincts very well, those of us who hang around in kitchens. Here are some of my better efforts, verbatim. It's a peculiar kind of poetry. Perhaps I could have rewritten these poems, now I'm no longer constrained by what's in the box, but they'd be less interesting then. After all, in pure terms, they're not great poems, except when you assess them within the context of their limitations, the rules and equipment. So, I'm not inclined to 'cheat'. Here we have an arbitrary small lexicon, chosen by others. And of course the restricted provision of pronouns, prepositions and suchlike, has its effect on syntax. I had the basic set, and a supplementary set given as a present ('Cerebra' Hah! Is someone suggesting I use long words??).
Only a game really. But games can be creative. I quite like the results, especially if flavoured with ambiguity. Like the first one, even if no one gets it. I was going to say I like the impermanence of it too, but I've gone and made it permanent, haven't I?


fetter it
the inchoate
see the moment
the symphony
overpower it
stop the watch


flay skin
meat riven
spray of blood
gorgeous picture
deft hewn
for TV


copse gilded by the sun
pink summer
delicate day
peachy mist
in the cool of the forest
smell musty
rust red leaves
under feet
lazy languid whispers
through rose shadow
music in the light
abide in a dream


the limpid
languid light
of spring
sun pallidly shines
in the still bare garden
it gilds
the leaves
into delicate petals
summer lives
weakly florid
for a time
then the cool
licks life away
the day lapses


Before you start jeering at the wussy subject matter of the bottom two, you've got to remember I can only work with what's there. There wasn't a 'terminator' tile, nor one for 'alien'.
I actually did these last year, the first three in one day. They've been hanging around but I may be clearing the fridge soon. I came back last night from a week or so away and one of my worst nightmares had realised itself, a flood from the water tank in the loft. It had stopped, but there had been enough water to warp floorboards including where the fridge stands. When I found myself contemplating all this the language going through my head wasn't very poetic at all.

14 February 2000