IN ANY WESTERN CITY

At 8 a.m. on the narrow stair
The toilet weeping through the floor
He climbs up to the rented loft
To mount the tattooed whore

And all along the painted streets
The living corpses stalk
From the leatherboy bars to an alley
Where the pigs are beating a wise-arse raw

Gerda, the third-rate dominatrix queen
Rules our local public house
At the bar she clocks a spineless man
His arms wriggling like a pubic louse

One by one she takes these things
To her place across the street
Strips them and commits them to film
Binds their testes to a leash

In an early morning café
Over a book by Herman Hesse
A whore-infected man across the table
Still animated by Goldmund on the verge of death

From the late-night haunt Pinocchio’s
A dreadful couple lurch
And stagger up the alley
To copulate on the steps of St. Nicholas church

From the cradle of St. Olaf's chapel, a foundling
Crawls like bacteria across the floor
Bleating foetal in a piss-stained Sally blanket
Spiked up at the locked and terminal door

As the once-pretty Glaswegian waitress
Vacantly spreads her knickerless lips
Unclasping the safety-pin from her second-hand pinstripes
To gather in their morning matrimonial fix

As the brutal restauranteer from the poorly-run hole
Ploughs his disillusion into her
Her pinned eyes riveted to this defunkt order's portal to the Lord
Inscribed with Amor vincit omnia

The transaction done they resume their trajectory for the sun
Zeroing in upon a cold back-alley doss
She with her incubitic babe beneath her wing
He making their nest amidst the spikes at the last station of the cross