Mike Gower



Suburbia barricades itself for the night,

doors bolt-tight. I walk the quiet street till -

a quiet scuffling. Under the lamplight

a badger, Bristol’s wild boar.

I pause, watching it; it pauses, watching me.

But I’m a distraction. On hungry business

It barrels off into the shrubby blackness.


In this partitioned, party-fenced, property-owned

‘paradise’ (Sneyd Park) I ask, “Whose the intruder?”

With your spade claws, you dug your domesticity 

deep before ape-armed man raised stone on stone. 

But we have the house deeds.


Equality, mutual respect? If we get TB we cure it;

if you get TB we kill you. But here you assert 

your living. At this midnight, momentarily we met

and I ask, “Which of us is the anomaly?”