Hassle

by David Morley

      The mush savo kek se les the juckni-wast oprey
      his jib and his zi is keck kosko to jal adrey sweti.

The man who has not the whip-hand of his tongue
and temper is not fit to go into company but Mike
is Mike is Mike, and all’s thrown from horizon to sky
when his whip-hand’s wired by White Lightning and Rye.
That is how we imagine him. Unfit for human society.
Mike thinks the planet’s one long bloody hassle.
Constellations spinning in the wing-mirror of his van
whether police cars or pole stars Mike’s heading home

to the full beam of a haulage depot, the sump and spill
of his caravan site, to the tilted mirror of a bottle,
the windscreen smash of hangover, to the oil chamber
of solicitors’ chambers, the handbrake turn of high court,
wheel spins of reporters. The exhaust of exhaustion
after hours haggling and hustling over access to his children.