from Telling Tales Prologue (Grime Mix)

by Patience Agbabi

see my jaw dropping neat Anglo-Saxon,
I got ink in my veins more than Caxton
and it flows hand to mouth, here’s a mouthfeast,
verbal feats from the streets of the South-East
but my April, she blooms every shire’s end,
fit or vint, rich or skint, she inspires them
from the grime to the clean-cut iambic,
rime royale, rant or rap, get your slam kick
on this Routemaster bus: get cerebral,
Tabard Inn to Canterbury Cathedral,
poet pilgrims competing for free picks,
Chaucer Tales, track by track, here’s the remix
from below-the-belt base to the topnotch;
I won’t stop all the clocks with a stopwatch
when the tales overrun, run offensive,
or run clean out of steam, they’re authentic
cos we’re keeping it real, reminisce this:
Chaucer Tales were an unfinished business.