Farrell poem
Type
Poetry

Fiat in Turin

We’ve gone inside with the bluebells, literary bluebells

naturally. I am in your shirt pocket, where I always

wanted to be. New Order plays somewhere outside but

it’s borderline dance music for me, and I freeze, and –

from inside your pocket – put the water in with the tea

 

And what the lover did to the mower, I do to Fiat’s

workers in Turin

 

Perhaps however that’s another me, another blow-in

consultant, another bird on another wind. Two of us

playing discus, eating biscuits, a musical two obviously

 

And what Fiat in Turin did to its workers, you do to my

thoughts and me

 

Inside the yard, but outside Italy. Grass tips in your hair

like a mower’s ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ under the noise, as

dandelion and co appear to be destroyed. Haha laughs a

fictional rat, did you get that? Like a poet need record an

execution for a general reader’s thrills. Two of us in the

mailbox, getting snailed on. Not the same two, logically

 

And what grass seeds did to the mower’s lungs I do to the

workers of Fiat in Turin

 

Poems go into and out of minds. Think of Tennyson in

the mind of Roger Casement. Think of the same poem in

the mind of Queen Victoria at the same time. Two of us

in the basement but never mind that. Superfluous rhymes

were a thing of the time. Critics disagree on Wordsworth

all the time. I spend my time looking for someone while

at home, while someone else is looking for home. They

could be on their way there. Lighten up. The Fiat workers

will all be dead soon. The factory managers too. Shine a

light on the way terrorism was used as an excuse to

dismantle a workforce. Two of us printing t-shirts. Think

of John Lennon living long enough to read Simon Jarvis

 

And what the mower did to the dandelion and the

dandelion’s friends, I do to the thoughts of the Fiat

workers in Turin

 

Or to listen to New Order, collaborate with New Order or

read Ricks on Larkin in the New York Review of Books

he did live long enough for that but, who knows, did he?

 

What Stevie Smith did for waving, what Fiat in Turin did

for Italian workplace relations, what Juliana did for the

mower and his thoughts, for Marvell and his future

availability, you, and the light of the future, which no

shade can hope to alleviate, do to the two of us, and to

adjust, to me

 

 

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Michael Farrell’s books include I Love Poetry, Cocky’s Joy and Writing Australian Unsettlement: Modes of Poetic Invention 1796–1945. He edits Flash Cove (flashcovemag@gmail.com).

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