Ian Duhig has written five books of poetry. The last two of these, The Lammas Hireling and The Speed of Dark (both from Picador) were PBS Choices. His last published short story appeared in Comma’s The New Uncanny, which won the Shirley Jackson Best Anthology Award for 2008, while his most recent musical collaboration, a contrafacta with the Clerks called ‘After the Mass’, appears on their CD Don’t Talk – Just Listen, from Signum Classics, 2009. His next book of poetry is forthcoming from Picador, with the working title of Jericho Shanty.
I love them. They bring a little antilife and uncolour
to the Corn Exchange on city centre shopping days
as if they had all just crawled out of that Ringu well,
so many Sadakos in monochrome horrow, dripping
silver jewellery down flea-market undead fashions.
They are the black that is always the new black,
their perfume lingers, freshly-turned-grave sweet.
Black sheep, they pilgrimage twice a year to Whitby,
through our landscape of dissolved monastery and pit,
which they will toast in cider’n’blackcurrant, vegan blood.
They danse macabre at gigs like the Dracula Spectacula.
Next day, lovebitten and wincing in the light, they take
photographs of each other, hoping they won’t develop.
Previously published in Stand.
Read more about Ian at Contemporary Writers, the Poetry Archive and PIW.