width=61 height=87> Voracious Verses



Vincent Berquez

Missing Person in the Rhyming Zone

She wears a yellow-metal wedding ring 
on her tiddle finger twiddle pointy thing, 
she could be reclining in your potting shed 
or crouched, urinating on your flower bed, 
stomping sometimes dancing dusty circles 
found underneath supermarket shelving 
head puzzling dramas of dialectics castles 
and eating.   

She is eating a tin of baking powder, 
drink slurping spicy clam chowder, 
swinging shrunk head laughing louder 
yap-yapping mad, ghosts crowd closer, 
tap-tapping shrunk brain shrinking smaller, 
click-clacking shelf smashing, mouth fuller 
yell-yelling at her mad madness maker, 
scream-screaming at her crazy creator, 
fighting, knuckles scuffing, lip cutting traitor, 
shifting, shouting at that women-hater, 
trapped mushed-out degraded brain matter, 
eat, eating getting fatter, 
sliding in the sickly humour and senseless patter, 
the cascading flow of mid-madness clatter chatter, 
the mind fried high-fire in fat-thick soupy batter, 
popping deadened cells at rates of speed, and she eats.  

She eats cat food. 

Tins slung down skinny aisles, 
silly girl glares in super smiles, 
raggy woman smells shameful, 
glimpsed brown stained bellyful, 
plunged deep smeared dirty miles 
f*rt soiled clean air & clean aisles. 

stinking stunk 
shrinking shrunk 
mind clunk 
mouth sunk 
clean of sp*nk 
and she eats junk. 

She eats. 

She eats foil and expensive wrapping paper, 
avoids hot meals and prepared food for later, 
dribbles stock cubes, chews linoleum floors, 
sucks knobs licks gloss paint off dirty doors, 
smears grease on her plastic coat, 
sits in the trolleys as if on board a boat, 
shrieks big voice without hitting a note, 
barking, yelping, braying like a crazy goat, 
scuffles skidding, yelping open throat, 
laughing, wobbling, wobbly big bloat. 

Sheís angry now.   

She wears a yellow zigzag metal bangle, 
pushes a blue/green shopping trolley 
sucked from the sh*t of an empty alley, 
from manic puddles of her mindís tangle. 

Fast flying fists flaying furious fiery fighting, 
nails scratching teeth biting voice screeching, 
seething blurred anger blue hot neck strangling, 
kicking hard feet nail scraping animal yelping, 
push, pushing away the men in their uniform, 
wrig-wriggling like a cabbageworm, 
jump-jumping up and down, tears like a rainstorm, 
carted away, dropped in the ambulance heavy, 
removed from her friends, food and liberty. 

She wears a yellow metal ring 
and a zigzag bent bangle. 
Her treasures follow her everywhere. 

© 2007 Vincent Berquez

Travel Tree

I have watched the slow and the fast accelerate 
From the blue of the sky and the weeping of rain 
Shaping the hardy, shifting the steps of the weary. 
The soft ground sinks from the tread of voyagers 
Lost to time and often themselves as they pass by. 

My flesh stretches across me like painted bitumen 
My branches grasp in all directions, in all directions 
Like the Christ spanning across continents of hope 
My branches point to the salvation of quenched life 
After the endless horizons travelled beyond the eye. 

Earth passengers move beyond themselves silently 
Seeking rewards and coin for their harsh labours, 
They walk in lines of many, blind in their soothsaying, 
Keepers of slight secrets that I guard in my canopy 
Where life circulates by the magicianís power of life. 

I breathe my oxygen and live when you fail and die, 
Your messages left on me illuminates in limited form, 
Notes and pictures clenched hands and help wanted, 
Photos, adorable faces, so soft and innocent look on 
Through clever inventions slowly turning to mud or dust. 

© 2007 Vincent Berquez

The Search For Wings

I suckled her music into me, 
A duet with my motherís 
Swollen breast and hot milk. 
She pumped, 
Flooding my core 
As I gasped existence 
Into the greater fabric of life. 

The gripped desire to be fed 
Overwhelmed and I greedily 
Mouthed her teat 
For a bellyful of humanity, 
I swallowed my future deeply.  

My mother sang 
Imperious songs 
Of damned eternity 
As she forced herself into me. 

I have no memory of her pushing, 
When I left the immensity of her womb 
And the light pinched my dormant senses. 

The gods of breathing nature attacked 
As the bacterium of time began to tick, 
My fiery wings fell from possibility 
As I landed in the waking soup of my life. 

© 2007 Vincent Berquez

Memory Box

I place you in the fertile soil 
of my memory, a stitched quilt 
of numbers patterned 
with the thread of time 
with the days flickering fast 
and slow,  
the novelty of months 
the surprise of years 
paraded before us, 
and we often forget donít we 
what meant what when it did 
and we roll up and down hills 
startled by the changes in us. 

I carefully cradled you 
in the warmth of these palms 
immersing you deep in my mind 
in the wealth of our shared time 
in my memory box, I keep you 
out of the noise of the world 
in the we, in the silence radiated. 

And this is not a box 
for forgiveness and loss, 
not from the death of parents 
by orphaned children bewildered 
in the grit-earth of an Africa country. 

My memory box is not physical, 
not old pressed metal discarded long ago. 
In my life I have such wealth and possessions 
that I never need to give or sacrifice 
the little I have on the path 
of future suns and moons 
in symbols and objects and magic. 

My memories have no consequences 
Of pain and poverty of HIV and AIDS 
I will not be buried in it in the dry clay 
In the infectious glare of the day, 
In the swell of tears 
after the departed have gone. 

My box is an allusion 
In the luxury of safety 
and support, 
here in the thirsty world 
of the first world, 
in this room abundant, 

My memory box is rich 
in design and affection 
and I do not devalue you 
by saying so 
or use this device used by others 
to mourn and remember their beloved, 
but this is a private sanctity of love 
that we inhabit in this space just for us. 

© 2007 Vincent Berquez