Liam Rector


KNOWN TO BOAT



I have been known to boat
On the waters of oblivion,
Bucking for a buoyancy

I once knew as a scruff,  
You and I rowing over 
To the grassy bank to fuck.

You were then taking your orals
In English and I was already out
Working for a firm.  Weekends

Were when we lived for then.
Now I’ve freelanced so long
I can no longer tell the days,

Except where a deadline, where money
Is involved.  We didn’t stay involved.
You married for money but were soon

Back to your wilder ways, and I stayed
Single, lived in a condo, and then could
Afford an expensive loft.  I live now in

A very expensive view
Where I can still see you
Still in the sway 

Of our boat, in the sway of
The long grasses along the bank.
You took your ex to the cleaners,

I heard, leaving him only
With a very pressed pair
Of grass-stained trousers.  

I can afford and am addicted to
Morphine now, chemically kissed,
And row that boat farther every day.



THE LAST ROARING AT THE WORKPLACE



                                       after Michael Drayton



The last roaring thing
I have to say in this
Aching hour is,

Of course, 
Fuck you.  
Fuck each

And every
Last one of you.
There, we’ve

Cleared the air
With that, and let’s 
Get on to

The sentimental stuff
Bound to be
Coming up …

I’ve been one
Who never has been able
To stay put in any

One place long.
You knew that
When I came and

You’re knowing that now,
Now that leave-taking time 
Comes between us.

You knew this, right?
We've been close.
We've been tight.

We’ve done something here
And it’s high time 
For my closing now.

And after this night
Let it not be seen
In any of our eyes

That we one jot
Of former love retain.
No, that’s the best 

Way, I know, and here
And now is where we 
Make all this right.

The clean break, 
However sad. 
Fuck you,

Fuck all of you, 
And fuck all the ache of
The everlasting things

We ever thought we had.  
 


FOR HER IN HOSPITAL


                    after E.A. McDowell




The sun comes up and we
Are old, and only
Stones repeat the cold.

For her we had hope,
That most powerful drug,
And we held hope’s hand

With energy, with elegy.
We love, love leaving; 
Leaving is all our springs. 


WHO'S IN CHARGE OF THE CULTURE HERE?


From The Patriarchal Prick
To The Evil Nanny, much
Less fun now.  We’d hoped for greater

Tenderness, intuition, mercy,
Less violence, but got leftist
Margaret Thatchers, less humor, 

Less drinking, cursing, spitting:
Things make life worth living.  
Nanny, Nanny, tut-tutting.  Orgy  

Of revenge, resentment,
Suffocating many, Nanny…
What we got was the chilling: 

No one honestly 
Saying anything.  What we got 
Was safety over adventure 

And the censor every day,
Security over the wild
Every night.  Meanwhile

Sheer terror
On the right…   
Bush the dry-drunk

Patriarchal Prick,
C-student frat rat,
America The Evil Empire:

No real excuse either. 
Two wrongs make no right.
Only thing left of the left:

Evil Nanny.