Local Sauce

Local Sauce

An octopus can stream itself
through a ragged peephole
punched through metal or glass
and emerge unscathed the other side;
can use a screwdriver,
or bottle opener - if it so chooses -
adopt the colour of any flag,
enormous forehead
like a blow-up academic's,
furrowed by deep philosophy.
And though I have bitten
into the tough frill
of a juvenile tentacle
and tasted nothing apart
from the local sauce,
I have witnessed a dogged
tenderness that taste alone
could not impart, how,
in Kardamili, I saw one spire
itself around a fisherman's arm
as he unloaded the jumbled trove
of fish and crustacean from a boat
hung with drying sponges.
When he prised it free,
and dangled it like a piece of lingerie,
I could see the black beak
snapping in muted song,
a deflated ink sac somewhere inside,
its contents emptied and eased out
to transparency by the tide.


from A Republic of Linen (Bloodaxe Books, 2009) © Patrick Brandon 2009, used by permission of the author and the publisher.

Recordings

Patrick Brandon

Patrick Brandon Reading from his poems

1Mountain Man

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2Grand Union

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3Red on Maroon

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4Dolphin

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5Higgs Bison

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6The Night Studio

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7Flat Dad

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8Writing from the Imperial Three Star

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9Bikini

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10The All Night Service Station within the Heart

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11Blinkers

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12Sade

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13Bush Craft

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14Lichen

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15Leading Man

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16Geneva

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17Local Sauce

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18Stuff

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19The Full Kit

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20Diamonds

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21A Sloping Pitch

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22Retro Ascent

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23Attic

24Night Signals

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25Downsizer

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26New World Guest House

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278 - 0

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28Clean

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29Y

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30The Bike

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31Pro Rata

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32The Lawn

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33Boy with Cat in Harness

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34Sunday

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35Triumph Dolomite

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36Oh Yes, Yes ... I Think I Can See it Now

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37En Plein Air

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38MacGraw and Late McQueen

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39Pillow

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40Powder

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41Howitzer

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42Spartacus

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43Teen Wolf

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Books by Patrick Brandon