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Image by Sarah Harrison

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 Reading from his poems

1Mountain Man

2Grand Union

3Red on Maroon

4Dolphin

5Higgs Bison

7The Night Studio

7Flat Dad

8Writing from the Imperial Three Star

9Bikini

10The All Night Service Station within the Heart

11Blinkers

12Sade

13Bush Craft

14Lichen

15Leading Man

16Geneva

17Local Sauce

18Stuff

19The Full Kit

20Diamonds

21A Sloping Pitch

22Retro Ascent

23Attic

24Night Signals

25Downsizer

26New World Guest House

278 - 0

28Clean

29Y

30The Bike

31Pro Rata

32The Lawn

33Boy with Cat in Harness

34Sunday

35Triumph Dolomite

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

37En Plein Air

38MacGraw and Late McQueen

39Pillow

40Powder

41Howitzer

42Spartacus

43Teen Wolf

Books by Patrick Brandon