Issue 29: Tim Plant

Dafuto Igirisuhito

I burnt the knuckle

of my right index finger

toasting crumpets

I should have used the electric toaster

but someone said they were better

cooked under the grill

It would not heal

yesterday it bled and scabbed

miniature beach-scape debris

I picked it of course

rolled the dried crust

between my fingers

Dropped it

onto the cover of

Post War Japanese Poetry

Almost the same shade

as the raised edge of the Sun

where it blends with the names




Narcissus Pseudonarcissus (Echopraxis)

he only pretended to gaze

at himself in the water

if she wanted

she could have

said something original

Theory suggests it was the image

that pretended to gaze at him

maybe it would be clever

or at least a way

of not sounding ridiculous

the function of reflection being to appear

to appear in the glass while remaining nubilous

answering by repeating the question

steering the fine line between receiving

the hard word or the soft silence

known but not knowing

would it have any sense of itself?

they might have made a handsome pair

cocktails and eye contact

ending possibilities endless

self is a slippery concept when talking of

the face in the water never the same twice

but whatever it was a shame

to hear her vowels dwindle

instead of her consonants egress

even if it were ever a single thing

what unity can be required of ripples?

the negotiations never began

positions were not taken

the eyes never eyeballed

from nymph to imago

echoes without origin

maybe by walking away

her vanishing point would have

drawn his attention

self repeated

seduced reduplicated

caught in his own reflection

again eye in itself

imagined image imagined


[Tim Plant first came to public knowledge as a subject of the ‘SPYCOPS’ undercover infiltration of left wing political organisations in the UK, beginning in the late 1960s. At that time, he was assessed as ‘a waste of time’.

Despite all of his efforts, this remains true even, or perhaps, especially today, as the most rudimentary search of the internet will demonstrate. 

In 2013 after a long bureaucratic career, he gained the degree of Master of Arts (with Distinction)  in Creative Writing from the University of Sheffield, which surely confirms the earlier judgement of the intelligence services. 

He currently grumbles and grunts along as part of Juxtavoices, Sheffield’s legendary antichoir.]

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