Man in Black
Heathcliff Hughes
Snaky Charms
Male Strumpet
Blue Moles
Full Fathom Five
Yorkshire Killer
A Winter Ship

Man in Black

Dead black coat—
Black shoes, black hair

There you stood with—
Your corduroy face

Wrinkled vortex—
Thin riveted lips

All of it together—
Not a pretty sight

Your black trousers—
Prim trim piggeries

No one sees you—
Spit on the floor

The shove and suck—
Of my deadly demise

Heathcliff Hughes

Stoney, horny poet—
Hermit of the moors

You killed Cathy—
Like you killed me

Rock-face, crab claw—
Mulling with the gulls

Stone-head, claw-foot—
Wife-killer hoodlum

Dour old despots—
Always end this way

Laughing at you—
Poor poet laureate

First Yorkshire Killer—
To get Order of Merit

Snaky Charms

Moon-eye, mouth-hole—
Your manly snaky spiel

Cambridge your Snare—
For the little Fulbright dear

Cruising campus with your—
Snake-rooted cute bottom

Showing off your Snakedom—
Such a Saint Botolph Badboy

Giving East of Eden—
A new excuse for exile

Consummate con-artist—
Playing your snarky pipe

Just another Mexborough—
Snaky hustler on the take

Male Strumpet

Veers into your slouch—
Pimp noir femme fatale

Both men and women—
Succumb to your charms

Mere brute, foul slut—
Never a day’s work

The game you play—
Hoity-toity mythic poet

Blotch, dimple, scar—
It turns the Queens on

Miss Eliot, Miss Auden—
And Stephanie Spencer

With rank grimace—
Faber’s nouveau hustler

Blue Moles

Dark ragbag of tricks—
Blue suede chewed shoes

Dead drunk at the pub—
Flung down like old gloves

Bad boy of the moors—
Male Mytholmroyd heartthrob

Between Fitzroy Road—
And Devon’s Court Green

Your corkscrew nose—
Your stiff Yorkshire pose

Not difficult to see—
Imagine the thug worst

Just simply ask—
Sylvia or Virginia Woolf

Full Fathom Five

Rumors were shallow—
Then they got deeper

Scotland Yard called in—
To unravel the story

The buried too quick—
Autopsy homicide report

All deeply fathomed—
Just another suicide

But deeper and deeper—
The whirlpool sucked

Something awful floated—
Rotten, knotted to the top

A dragnet ensued then—
Assia spilled the beans

Yorkshire Killer

A labyrinthine tangle—
Rooted deep in the knuckles

Buried with the shinbones—
The inscrutable skull

The thick air murderous—
Thick as breathing water

From archaic trenches—
A strange injury emerged

The bruise on her forehead—
Done by the big glass ashtray

Then the unimaginable—
The Yorkshire Killer back

The way ghost ships rise—
Outta Bermuda Triangles

A Winter Ship

Wuthering Heights death—
Sylvia buried deep in the moors

Coming up to haunt—
Poor Heathcliff forever

“When you left me,” she said—
“You were the death of me”

Each grass-tip sharp—
Sharp as a sea of grassy knives

The sun diminishing to nothing—
Ensconced in scudding clouds

Bearded and burned out—
Heathcliff-Hughes weeps

He’ll never be able to rid—
Himself of Sylvia’s curse

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