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Sport 14: Autumn 1995

Grayson Cooke — How To Write A Gun

page 139

Grayson Cooke

How To Write A Gun

A texture, a background,
law-abiding lines on a fashionably thin page.
Everything is in its place, the children are in bed.
You want it to be so pleasant
that the potential for unexpected violence
lurks dangerously close to the surface.

The hero walks in and states right at the outset that he will take no prisoners, that he has a mission and nothing is going to distract him from it, cripples fucking on crowded trains, ‘kill’ energy, priests raped at gun-point, unex plained explosions, flowers growing from bullet-wounds, whores mocking thieves, pilgrims mocking prophets, incendiary words exploding off the page, the simultaneous desire to laugh and to scream, necessity and impact, an elephant balanced on a pin.

Make Idea and Form combine,
allow the page you are writing on
to reach critical mass,
take it slow and you won’t even puncture the skin;

That is how you simulate a shot-gun in a poem.