A is for All the things not on this list.
B is a Bear going Bump Bump Bump down the stairs, Behind a child who will always remember that sound.
C is for “all the Cavities of the Coynte and the inability to stiffen a swivelling tongue more polluted than the Cheeks of a suburban prostitute.” Adapted from Martial, all praise is due to him.
D is for Dead critics.
E is El making love in quiet places.
F are Florentines, brittle like they should be or mushy like the knockoffs at Fortnum & Mason. Dante covered in honey, bridges and stonemasons also qualify in this category.
G is for Good things happening to Good people, shitty things that happen to assholes and the boring bits in between. Priapus watching from the cloisters with one eye open, pricking his courages. If you think he’s blind that only Goes to show how little you really know.
H is Hell.
I is for Ignorance crushed under Siva’s jewelled slipper. He will dance forever because he loves you.
J is for Justice tempered by mercy ultimately overcome and fondly forgotten. A Jihad in your backyard because bigots don’t need to believe anything to hate you.
K is rocking the Casbah.
L is for disappearing Ligatures. I can understand Losing thorn, wynn, yogh, ash – all casualties of Linguistic evolution – but why doesn’t my keyboard care that I can’t spell encyclopaedia with 12 Letters instead of 13? I’m not superstitious but this worries me.
M is Mimesis in postmodern novels by which I Mean Mammy, watching over the world Mushing it between her Mammaries and Murmuring a lullaby.
N is for Nodding when somebody else is talking (while thinking about something Nobody else Needs to Know).
O is an Orange and looks like One too. Not an Ouroboros, they aren’t always Orange.
P is a number between nothing and 2.
Qs make a bus ride home take twice as long because of tourists who won’t like it here anyway. It’s not sunny enough, the people aren’t as friendly as their brochures (or bibles) led them to believe and everything is far too expensive.
R is for Rubrics in Red.
S is the Sneaking Suspicion that life Shouldn’t be like this and Something has gone wrong and if I could only retrace my Steps and correct those glaring mistakes I Shall be Satisfied. Stupidity and curiosity and Sleep.
T is for Things and not-Things.
U is for Underneath, where people are more interesting.
V is a dream in the mind of Des Esseintes – an endless Vista of Vaulted arches leads up to a throne encrusted with calcedony where the Nidularium blossoms between a woman’s meagre thighs. “Thank God, thank God! it is only a dream.”
W is for William Morris and the Kelmscott Chaucer, his perfect book.
X is for Kisses when you can’t think of something beautiful to say to somebody you supposedly love. The illiterate X hasn’t been this popular since the Middle Ages. The fact that an X signified a Cross might give some people pause to consider – who it is they’re actually kissing.
Y is for Yeats in a tattered coat.
Z is a Zebra watching me from the corner of the room with implacable tormenting eyes, dreaming of the savanna.