The Signature of Osama Bin Laden

I am a fishbone
with two barbs in my tail:

above my cartoon cod-head,
an olive branch is hovering,

doveless, like a mutant tilde.
Here in my gorge I have just

gulped down a grenade,
its thin pin trailing,

awaiting a finger. One eye
is single, an unborn spawn.

The other is falling, a faint
fullstop in that space

where my neck has been nipped
and tucked. I am a strange

sperm in a flotilla
of white, seemingly speechless.

       


[September 2001]

From the book Make Mine A Double