Anne-Laure Coxam


an inner revolution hidden behind half a revolution


in December a man’s mind can make
a calculation to find where the sun will hit
in the garden at eight o’clock in May

he can cut the red brambles
growing wild and spiky
at the foot of the high caramel wall

with his hands and a small cement mixer
he can build a small concrete platform
large enough for a small table and a chair

this ground floor flat was sold when we went round its rooms
one last time we considered the work the man had already done
at the back of the garden             cutting the red brambles
making the platform

someone explained the man made
the calculation of where the sun would hit
in May to build the concrete platform

we all stopped talking for a moment
considering the calculation of the man
and the concrete platform where the berries were

there was also a wild tortoise
in those brambles

it disappeared




What the flock?


there are a lot of news videos
on news websites
on the internet
I watch news videos
for my news class
every week
the news is not very good

to distract us
from brexit etc
to distract us
from what became
‘ordinary’ comments
see the gym hall is lit at night
you know why
to light the migrants there
with my taxes
that is a fuckin scandal

to distract us
there is news
about yoghurt

from milk factory
to lab
customers were not prepared
for tastes like strawberry and mint
it was a very good product
but ahead of its time

from lab
to supermarket
a middle aged woman says
I have natural yoghurt with sugar
during the week and
chocolate mousse at the weekend
she moved me
same pattern as me
she’s my dairy pal

but cows!
western european cows
by selecting
the most docile
by disregarding the wild
were not in the news

above the unseen herd
flocks of migrating birds fly
nomadic and untamed

migration is a gamble
migration is dangerous
bad weather
radio masts
power lines
plants dying
areas drying
storms at sea
driving birds
into waves
oil spills
and man

birds get lost
blown too far west
blown too far east

some lost souls
settle in their new homes
like Albert the black-browed albatross
from the antarctic
who lived
for many years
among a colony
of gannets
did Albert feel lonely

I feel foreign
to transformation
but not to movement
movement feels natural
transformation is always a surprise
when I put a dish in the oven
I’m never too sure
it’s going to cook

poets migrate too
some of them reached
the coasts of Scotland
by travelling through
free space
to be called

scotland is a hospitable
land for poets
(if they can deal with the climate)
poets like plants
search for cross pollination and
local poets breed with migrant poets
to give diversity a chance

scotland is a land of words
where words grow wild
in large quantities
enough to sustain large metres of poets
enough for large metres of poets to gather

relatively marginal
defenceless creatures
they are usually peaceful
but recently
they have been flapping
their wings in

although they came in peace
they need

to preen their feathers
to sharpen their beaks

to sharpen their songs
of call and response


Anne-Laure Coxam doesn’t exist. She is called Anne-Laure Brugnon but chose Coxam because she lives in Scotland and it is easier to pronounce for English speakers and because it was her Gran’s maiden name and she loved her.

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