Kipper Dreams

The most useful part of the day may be lost in the attempt
to make a satisfactory breakfast, say
kippers, their grilling permeates the whole
cottage with an exaggerated sense
of a fishy sea which in any case is
not far off below the cliffs, or in dreaming that I'm
reading my poem at a confused testimonial dinner
to friendships real or imagined in a turmoil
of camaraderie and competition
from the clatter of crockery.

The late morning is palely here, flies
drugged on the fogged window,
oily smoke of kippers seeping through
cracks in the floorboards, awakening
me upstairs to the fact that once more the day is
unusually far gone, those hours
when normally I'd be up and doing something
about the feeling of a lack of
accomplishment going up in smoke.

The day is oily, pale, the everyday
domestic combustion about to happen
above the grey ocean facing us.
The most useful part of the fish is
threaded between my teeth.
So much of the truly lived life is spent
eating and dreaming of sociable meals.