Pondering the End of the World
Christadelphians say read the Bible,
Christ is coming soon.
Jihadis say Esa is coming soon, and then bomb
as many people as possible, as if to prove it.
Jesus, even bolder than jihadis, spoke unashamedly
of the end of the world. Be wise! Be ready when I return!
Ready to be taken, not left behind
for the Beast to devour.
Daniel escaped the lions’ den,
but no-one will escape the Beast, He said,
except the elect: those special souls chosen
before the world began to die for the Faith.
So, the Beast was before the world began
and Christ was before the serpent or the lamb,
and the end of the world was before its beginning
just as rain knew how to fall before the first storm.
A Full Moon
The moon dominates the sky.
The moonlight illuminates my drive.
There is nowhere for a burglar or fox to hide,
no room for the Darkness.
The stars hover around the moon.
They hang around the moon from August to July.
There is jealousy out there and no shyness,
no need for shades to hide behind.
The sun envies the moon.
The moon lingers in the morning light.
Riverbeds, as visible as they are tonight,
make fine embroidery.
Nobody’s Husband Now
My room is quite luxurious,
the large fridge stacked with bottles
of water and unfamiliar wines.
I thought the flight would never end,
now the triple bed is giving me ideas.
I should take a pill. … Elizabeth
once introduced me to a prophylactic,
it was the year we went to Stratford
to see Kate and Jacobi trying to tame
the shrew. Kate was thirty and prettier
than all her sisters.
I saw her again at Larry’s funeral,
looking demure and very unshrew-like.
Not long after, she almost divorced
Jacobi. He didn’t deserve her anyway.
Of course, they had to choose him to play
Professor Humbert in Lolita. The scene
with mother, daughter and professor
sitting on a swinging bench was annoying.
Daughter was flirting with professor,
but mother said nothing. Middle-class
liberalism I suppose.
Anna Lombard was very liberal.
She had a husband and a husband-in-waiting.
The husband-in-waiting nursed the husband
while he was dying, happy in the knowledge
he would soon replace him. Then she killed
her only daughter and still got to live happily
ever after. Is there any wonder? Huh!
There was another Lombard, Carole.
She died far too soon, just like Elizabeth
driving home from school in her green Mercedes,
a staunch atheist to the end, probably now bathing
in the river of life, courtesy of grace, while I’m
here in this thirsty hole of a Third World country
Ian Fitzgerald was born in Birmingham, where he works as a tutor in English. He has travelled widely in North America and is a graduate of Dartmouth. His poetry has been published in The Warwick Review.
Image credit: Jonas Tana