I blame the dinosaurs

I read somewhere scientists suspect
the apatosaurus had such a long neck
was it meant it could stay in one position
when taking on board tree nutrition

it makes me think there must be genes
for turning us into eating machines
maybe explains the current scenario
as we strip the earth of its natural material

and when it’s done and we’re left with a rock
and the planet’s the planet that time forgot
we’ll finally shift our pendulous bodies
and lurch into space for new opportunities

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the nightmare continues

Brexit.

Sounds like an energy biscuit. Except this one’s the opposite, the kind you’d eat to bring you back down. Frosted with Diazepam.

As I write, the government have voted to extend Article 50, and ask the EU if we can delay our exit. Which is like being on the rack and asking the guy in the leather apron for a few more turns of the wheel, because – you know – it really is helping with our joint problems…)

For the record, I’m a Remainer. Or Remoaner as we were rebranded. Presumably on the basis that we had the absolute GALL and plain BAD SPORTSMANSHIP to complain about the amount of misinformation that was put out at the time of the referendum, and to point out that maybe such a complex and important move should be worthy of a little more balanced thinking. I mean, you wouldn’t put in an offer to buy a house that was advertised as charming, plucky, full of character, great views – only to read the survey and find out it’s built of Play-Doh, on a fault line, near a reactor, overlooking some abandoned docks – and NOT feel a little scratchy.

Still – a vote is a vote.mrsmay

‘Let’s get this done’ croaks Mrs May, leaning in, reassuring as a fancy dress nurse with an ID badge drawn in crayon.

Part of me wishes it would just go ahead. Maybe it’ll be okay. Maybe we can trust the ERG, the DUP and any of the other reactionary crazies who would love nothing more than to make this country a Land of Hope and Glory theme park, where the log flume is actually a giant Churchillian cigar rushing headlong down a cataract of laundered money, and the golden horses of the carousel are restricted to the kids from public schools; where the canteens are filled with cheap chlorinated chicken and beef burgers oozing with Five Mile Island dressing; where the Queen lives in a glittering tent waiting to tell the fortune of anyone the park inspectors happen to push through her flaps, and the Hall of Mirrors is a miniature Houses of Parliament, where everyone constantly changes shape.

The only hope is that some ragged revolutionary force will storm the gates, push over the Monopoly banker character that says: You Have To Be THIS Wealthy To Enjoy our Rides! , overpower the Facebook sponsored security guards, and then run around unzipping all the minimum wagers trapped in the character costumes, the Frowning Shakespeares, the Laughing Policemen, the Private Doctors, The Trumps.

Then what?

Dissolve cut from the fires of the burning fairground to the not-so-distant future…

Climate change will be the one, unavoidable subject of public discourse. It’ll either be raining too heavily or blowing too violently or blazing too intensely for anyone to think about anything else. There’ll be factions calling for greater cooperation between people and states, factions insisting on a tighter, more protectionist approach, and then another, mysterious, more watchful faction – the one with the money, hubris, tech and military backing – who’ll have thought for a long time that the best thing to do is to pull out completely, in something big and splashy, called The Ark©, and they’ll be quietly studying star maps spread out on brushed steel tables, circling in red some other poor planets we can screw up.

Spacexit. (What a ride).

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fenlantis

hi / I’m from Wisbech / (that’s whizz as in speed / & beach not in sand / but in how the fuck can this be seventeen miles inland?)

Welcome to Wisbech, then! / Capital of the Fens / *er-hem* / I know, I know – it sounds so grand / civically solid & well planned / but no, I’m afraid it’s really not / it’s more like the land that time forgot / or as Dorothy says in The Wizard of Oz / because because because / because of the socio-economic situation and stuff / so it’s pumpkins not munchkins / and ‘follow the A1101’ / not that other, brighter, more Technicolour construction / and suddenly you’re there / lying in the Five Bells with straw in your hair / flying monkeys everywhere

so – erm – yeah – Wisbech – Capital of the Fens / (so ludicrous it’s worth saying again) / like they held a ceremony of considerable pomp / for the inauguration of the king of the swamp / still, I suppose everyone needs a catchy title / like maniac needs homicidal / to fully unravel / the horror of your spiritual travel

Welcome to Wisbech – Capital of the Fens / that’s capital as in punishment / for all the souls in featureless torment / on floodplains of abandonment / with a flatline skyline / of turbines & pylons / sirens, violence, two-for-one nylons / broken bridges / midges / fly-tipped fridges / seriously – the attractions are prodigious

Welcome to Wisbech – Capital of the Fens / dragging down the high street in a cloak of farmyard odds & ends / a diadem / cut from an apple box / a couple of raspberry punnets for crocs / and an orb of sprouts stuffed in a football sock

Wisbech, Oh Wisbech! – Capital of the Fens! / gangmaster of piggeries & factory hens / council cuts & overspends / swingers, wringers & brexit bringers / of slow, silty rivers / malarial sweats & shivers / golden eyes & cirrhotic livers / broken vows in broken mirrors / where everyone dreams but only Tesco delivers

Wisbech – My Wisbech – Capital till the End / when climate change will make amends / and orchids & field scabious will bloom / and bitterns boom / and dragonflies hover & zoom / stem to stem / in the deepening, darkening fen / and all will be well in Wisbech again / and me? I’ll be a model of longevity / staggering around at a hundred and seventy / kept alive by medical complexity / just well enough for one last dive / tumbling backwards off the side / as we glide / to a stop / when the instruments detect some sunken shops / way down below us in the black water slops / & I’ll fin my way down with a torch on my head / to illuminate the sports shop owned by Fred / where mum worked cash in hand / half buried now in the silt and the sand / and I’ll part the weeds and I’ll stare through the glass / at the transformation that has come to pass / eel not Fila / minnow not Umbro / pike not Nike / and I’ll smile enigmatically behind my mask / because nature has claimed what was hers at last / and Wisbech is finally cool & romantic / like Doggerland, lost to the Atlantic

(and then no doubt I’ll probably drown / and – by the way? sending an elderly diver down? / in conditions of such poor visibility? / I think you’ll find that’s culpability)

emmerich knows

this is not a rehearsal, sheeple / this is Operation Too Many People / Wanting Too Much Stuff / the bail bond version of The World is Not Enough / because at the end of the day / the cost is WAY more than unlimited texts / a fancy new handset / it’s about limited natural resource to share / it’s the wind in your thinning hair / it’s muddy waters and smoggy air / it’s that polar bear / there / wobbling by on what’s left of the Larsen B / C / or D / or whatever / sweating in the unseasonably balmy weather / underfed, indisposed / balancing on the last of the floes / to melt beneath its hairy toes / watching as you pose with your extended family / at the end of a selfie stick / instagram slick & super quick / on the luxury deck / of the good ship Charlie Darwin / saying everything’s charming, charming / & wondering why attenborough was quite so alarming / but you only give it three stars on Trip Advisor / because you’re three thousand down and none the wiser / the weather was shit / you were sea sick / the dramamine didn’t take care of it / but anyway / hey / you’re basically okay / you’re an optimist at heart / I mean – where do you start? / nothing’s impossible / you’ve just got to be philosophical / it’s not as if none of this happened before / I mean – look at the dinosaurs / the original baby boomers / you can’t tell me they weren’t big consumers / admittedly mostly ferns and cones / in the more temperate zones / supersize meat eaters / on a scale / that would make whittingstall pale / running helter skelter / through muddy swamps and river deltas / leaping pronto back of a brontoburger / with a side order of allosaur / volcanoes and asteroids permitting / I mean – c’mon – they never thought of quitting / moaning about how hot it was getting / no – they clacked their jaws / and waggled their claws / and let dinosaurs be dinosaurs / I mean – when all’s said and done / the earth was always going to fall into the sun / so why not relax and have a little fun? / did you ever see that film from the 1950s / (bear with me on this, please) / the Incredible Shrinking Man? / I think / anyway / basically / it’s about this guy who shrinks – A LOT / because he sunbathes on his yacht / through a cloud of radiation / and without any explanation / finds his clothes are too loose / till he ends up sneaking around in a doll’s house / playing cat and mouse / with a cat / (true dat) / reducing in increasingly tiny increments / cleverly utilising household implements / until he ends up in a fight to the death / with a spider on a window ledge / on the prowl for spider snacks / but he catches it good in the cephalothorax / with a sewing needle / covering our resourceful indiveedle / in acky spider goo / but when it’s eat or be eaten, what d’you do? / then he walks outside through a vent / looks up at the starry firmament / and thinks about his existential position / in light of his chronically minimising condition / and he says: ‘The unbelievably small and the unbelievably vast eventually meet, like the closing of a gigantic circle’ / (or that’s what he says according to google)

anyway, point is

films will always have something to say about this shit / take roland emmerich / cgi king of apocalyptic schtick / he predicted all this / with a cute, self-cleansing, Gaia kind of twist / (mark my words – we’ll be quoting from him / in years to come when the news is grim / already do – to give it some context / look at Chicago and the polar vortex)

for instance – my favourite scene from his oeuvre? / (a small thing, true but it hits a nerve):

Ian Holm is giving the team some broody looks / then he pulls some whiskey from out behind a bunch of science books / and you know exactly what adrian lester’s thinking / can this really be the last shit I’ll ever be drinking? / while / miles away / on that apocalyptic day / after tomorrow / on the way / to Balmoral / a fleet of royal helicopters start popping & dropping / rotor blades stopping / the pilots so many helmeted icicles / airworthy as a frozen bicycle / while inside, unseen / poor Elizabeth, our very own snow queen / is suddenly just so much royal frosting / illustrating what climate change was really costing

because trust me – EMMERICH KNOWS / how the world is only just so / until uh-oh / where’d it all go? / the greenland ice sheet & the Tibetan plateau / the indus & the ganges / vanisheees / c02 & methane exponential / rains torrential / wildfires residential / territorial & water wars potential / while the politicians & presidents / & sundry other residents / get it too late / why attenborough was so awesomely great / why he’d shake his head and close his eyes so sadly / and talk about how we were fucking things up so badly

but – my bad / there’s always comfort to be had / in blinkered denial / waving our hats rodeo style / as we ride flaming into the chasm / on the poor earth’s dying spasm / this shrink-wrapped, oil-tapped, carbon clapped / flaming cinder we called home / it’ll be alright – now leave me alone

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