Thursday 5 February 2015

2 Poems by Alan Catlin

Spanish Exhumation

They are excavating
the unmarked graves
of a Spanish Inquisition:

mass burials by fascista
friends and neighbors
fathers and sons

men and boys
indiscriminately shot
immaterial now as

layers of dirt
between relics and
bones as

what is uncovered:
mostly empty wallets
identity papers

pocket watches
without hands;
life and time erased

Without Windows  Without Doors  Without a Mouth to Speak

Barren plains invite the dust,
the grey, unpainted, shot gunned
houses, all of them vacant as stillbirth,
their windows without panes,
doors hanging on sprung hinges,
ceiling cracks, fissures where the rain
sinks in.

Outside, black storm of clouds,
funnel shaped rain splitting the horizon,
lightening quakes the fallow earth
making spirits dance.

Then, a surging plague of locusts
flinging their bodies against the clapboards;
the sounds of it like buck shot
striking home.


Alan Catlin has been publishing for parts of five decades. His latest full length book is a memoir with poetry, “Books of the Dead” and forthcoming is a chapbook of poetry, “Beautiful Mutants”.

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