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"What colour's the future?"

Alison Pick


"What colour's the future?"   — Carol Ann Duffy

The future is blue. Squint hard
and it blackens: a bruise, sour plum,
at daylight-savings retreating,
its mouth in its hand. Is near.
Is the refusal to harvest the root:
carrot, parsnip, all troops deployed.
You know who I mean. The one
on the hunt, on the prowl, with blood
on his hands. The fate of the future,
make no mistake, the favoured side
of the coin. Don't forget fear
(o the future is here!): the rubble
and gray of the twin match-
stick towers ashing down.
Is a gas &mdash: burns orange, burns
white &mdash: a year that combusts half-way,
on the fourth of July. The future's
a palate of colours too foreign
to worry the tongue: cobalt,
azure, the future is clear,
the glass you hold up to the past
to make it make sense. Make do.
Make an attempt: put your
change in the pot. The future
is green, the green of a well,
the o of its open, its poison, its entrance
to hell. Is road-kill, rodent,
near-extinct reptile &mdash: the future's
a lizard that loses its tail. And
grows back a new one. Or doesn't.


Alison Pick's works copyright © to the author.


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