Two Poems – ROGER HARE

Minamata Convention

                                      After Mercury

(The Minamata Convention on Mercury is an international treaty designed to protect human health and the environment from ………….. releases of mercury and mercury compounds. Source – Wikipedia)


                   vermillion kiss

                   untarnishable bliss

tells me
when the air is warm enough
to say that ‘I love you’

tells me
the wealth of my blood,
its distance from boiling point

tells me
just how much pressure
I am standing in

dental fillings             ✓
paints                          ✓
soaps                           ✓
batteries                      ✓
fluorescent lighting   ✓

and deep in the weft of the world
it’s thread
the signature
of our eroding legacy
at work

Phôs phóros

Cage me with water, with oil,
with[in] tubules of carbon, with
a circle of oxygen cuffed to my hands
or else I explode my gasping with fire.

Take me to war where I will cover you
with smoke, or, if you like,
liberate my spite
to fill your foes with moaning.

Match-girls and Match-women alone
won the better of me –
ten-hour shifts of ten million matches
drove dreams to close my phossy jaw.

(Phossy jaw – a disease brought about by exposure to phosphorous)

Roger Hare, now retired, during his last few years as a community development worker, rediscovered a love for poetry. He has been published in several online and in-print projects and journals incl., Elbow Room, Liminal Residency, Dream Catcher, Anthropocene, Re-Side, Lyrical Eye, Spillwords, Ice Floe Press, BeZine, Sarasvati (forthcoming) and Fevers of the Mind. His work is included in five anthologies – Deep Time 2, Dark Confessions and Freedom Rapture (Black Bough Poetry),  Black Lives Matter (Civic Leicester) and Art (Dreich chapbook). Roger was commended in the 2019 Gloucestershire Writers Network Competition,was a prizewinner in the 2020 Manchester Cathedral Poetry Competition and had a pamphlet commended in the 2021 Frosted Fire Firsts Competition. 

Banner Art: Of a Cruel Window View in Quasar Night, a visual poem by Robert Frede Kenter (c) 2022.

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