Detective Fiction



Detective Fiction
Being Kite’s Boy
Brighton Rock
Detective Poetry

Detective Fiction

“Eliot's willingness
to talk more openly
when the subject
turned to detective
fiction”—Michael Shelden
Graham Greene: The
Enemy Within

Brighton once a fashionable —
Resort in its Regency heyday
Now in the 1930s pretty much
Down-at-heel & extremely vulgar

The amusements are tacky —
A series of clichés: ghost-train,
Shooting-gallery, Kewpie dolls
Paper hats and sticks of rock

A supposedly festive location —
But more often just a dreary hole
Full of evil and gangster crime
With Pinkie as a ruthless shark

People are on holiday—
The sun is shining but there’s
A chill, foreboding fear of danger
A sense of cold isolation


Being Kite’s Boy

“Being Kite’s Boy was
good enough for him”
—Michael Shelden
Graham Greene: The
Enemy Within

Down, down I go—
Further down into the
Fag noir labyrinthine
Queer Greeneland

No wonder Graham—
Ended up in Capri
Along with “South Seas”
Norman Thomas

Greene's "Brighton Rock"—
Picturing the modern
Mystery masterpiece
That Eliot imagined

Brighton Rock

Was it going to be a—
Brighton Rock candy day?
Dark sticky sweet seamy
Shoved down my throat?

Or a bloody razor day—
Slice, dice and murderous
With young Pinky Brown
Leading the gang now

Richard Attenborough—
AKA “Young Scarface”
Teenage Brighton hood more
Ruthless than Colleoni gang?

Punks like Pinky Brown—
Are a dime a dozen but
They turn me on just like
They did Graham Greene

A greasy full moon slides—
Down the bedroom pane
Lying in bed I hesitate even
Fuckin getting up today

Detective Poetry

“the position of the
matter of fact and
the fantastic”
—T. S. Eliot

Not just the yellow fog—
The gloomy bars and cheap
Hotels, the half-deserted
Streets, the rats, smells

The lonely typist in her—
Furnished room, random
Bits of convention and
Sordid popular tunes

Hyping such imagery—
The zither-maddening
Intensity, the vision
Of the modern Wasteland

The guilty pleasures—
Concealed in the pages
Of ordinary thrillers
Pulp fiction murders

Murder mysteries—
For the wrong reasons
Disillusion and despair
In the poetic air

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