1348, by St George
Edward conjured me through the
smaller trade routes: Portugal, Capadocia,
to displace the fazed sainted idiocy
of that elder Edward, who’d muted England
to a carapace of white submission.
It was a perfect leapt year. Plenty stalked
those commercial veins: spice, fleas, pearls,
diced wth the sailors. They spliced
the Death of course, tetchy in its
guttural progress. I was Edward’s double
purgative. Ever after, English teeth
bared a tighter rictus like a corpse.
Crecy was nothing on Poitiers, Agincourt.
I’d doctored your blood; who survived
the bubo was bellicose.
That’s not truth, but metaphor becoming
truth, down to the last yew-drawn
hung obsession, to the last regalia’d
corgi jest: you have the Georgian grin,
the age’s shadow of my sword’s length
whispering the rust of all saints militant.
You’ve made your death, you’ll have to lie in it.
Simon Jenner © 2008