Jim Ferguson (British Working Class Poetry)

Jim Ferguson is a working-class writer from Scotland. He lives in the north of 'The British Isles' and would accept the word 'British' as a geographical term. As a long-time anti-imperialist Ferguson does not endorse the British State nor most of its governmental institutions which are long, long overdue for radical reform. Ferguson would like to see the final deconstruction of the remains of the British Empire, which would mean the restoration of full national statehood to Scotland, England, Ireland and Wales as democratic republics. He has published a number poetry collections, pamphlets and so on, details here: http://www.jimfergusonpoet.co.uk"





how things gather

seem to seem crusted

aggregate dust


itchy eyes

with peering -

goo in the corners


moves to a crunch

a crunchy mass

a mess of this n that


sneeze it away

or rinse with tears

the newest goo re-forms


scratch it out

scratch old eyes out

everything cleared








word is a




sign and symbol

so deeply rooted



the outside world

as symbol and sign



the head a-dreamful

abstraction only



the names of things

unknown before



the outside world

somehow predictable

                     Only but


not always

impossible to fathom



you sail out

somehow forward from the womb

                     If you are lucky


have moments in hand

ahead of time

                     To go





   Dark –

            Too is and also

a four-letter word


with time the spectacles

become more elaborate


some like

the metaphor of the milk-bottle


the eyes pearls of the head

not teeth


teeth fall

like toppled cemetery stones


the eyes are the pearls of the head

perhaps a better metaphor perhaps


they gleam still don’t let enough light

into the head


how the eyes shine from the face

in the mirror of a toothless head


what is dark

accumulation of



being outwith

an almost anywhere

sense of light




work and rock

four apiece


what is the alphabet

all combinations


from outside the head

inside transferred to the outside




to understand and

simply call it


 - lanwij


magical connections

of sight and sound and


add it all up

simply call it


- maffs


eyes work

eyes pearls

work dull





the four-letter word 

as code for survival


survival feels good

alas - all that work


to enable survival

wears out the pearls


of joy residing

in hedonism


of the heart




see how they run

see how they build


see how that consumed

becomes accumulated waste


forms the goo

the crust upon the eyes


that blinds you



in whispers

through the dark


good night


dark is a word

what is dark




mice is a four letter word

what is light


light is five


five is a four-letter word

                                          boom - boom


dreams jump over the moon


My battery is running low

My electric mind goes pop pop pop

Bring my headphones

Night vision goggles

Dance across the top deck of this bus

Get naked now with Oliver Twist

Got the frozen blue-skin blues

Got a valentine’s card in December

The memory of you is dementia pleasure

The memory of you is a black n white snapshot

Bring on the dancing elephants

Bring on Madam Exotic

Come out with your deathly exploits

Let’s take this acid bus into town

You know what it’s for

You know that it’s love

It’s a valentine’s card in December

It’s a must must must improve my bust

It’s the birth of sanity

It’s the poem of the century

It’s ginseng ice-cream

It’s marriage and babies

Happy families

Men dressed as ladies

All the curtains come down

Take a bow right now

Now you’re dead

Now you’re dead

Now you’re dead

Bless your low artistic heart

It’s a grey sky above

And you’re whisky raving

On the top deck of this bus

Brecht is on fire

And now it’s a riot

On the top deck of this shambling bus

Roll over buddy boy

In your bankrupt igloo

An immoral being in an immortal zoo

Love is dead there is no resurrection

Love is dead there is no breathing heart

Just a bun and a burger

No mayo or sauce

Just baked in mediocrity

In a sponge full of corruption

Burn this king’s bus to the ground

Burn this king’s bus to the ground

Get started all over again

New sandcastles and starfish ice-cream

Watch the bus melt

As our dreams jump over the moon

- our old bankrupt dream -

    Our dream jumps over the moon

       While some other nutter is burning the cakes


at the hoose whaur tam did bide


my auld pal tam

three mile at least atween his place and mine

easy by 44-bus in drunken time


and she, my love, off to jamaica

the why and what for unremembered

nothing between us was going right


children lost and blind to myself

the summer sky looked sad

eternal rain and heavy cloud


tam and me in boozy reverie

watched that movie called

‘the legend of the holy drinker’


a violent legacy of love and magic

for people without an address

a symphony for the homeless, the needy


and there was plenty to drink…

much later, dancing, in a garden pond

plump with goldfish


my heart glad of friends, the woman knitting,

the thick seam on the back of her stockings

brings in my mother from the 1960s


who would remember, who would know

the pain made softer by company

other people not being hell but gladness


solace and serenity and the blood all wine and madness

a gentle self-destruction, in mourning for her,

in mourning for the unborn


how those children slipped away

miscarried evening, stillborn morning

that was why she’d gone to jamaica


and that was why my heart was broken,

nothing was going right between us

and tam giving friendship to me


sharing a movie, his booze and his money

i wanted to jump in the clyde but didny ─

at the last moment clarinets and strings did sing

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