Look at this thing, this gruesome thing, this shake-off from the slick.
A car mechanic’s rag, a bag of bile, a doodling hand that drags
a biro clot of crudeness up the beach.
This foul-up. This bird. This broken component of our world.
Then look at that: a flesh gorged kite, circling
while cluster bombs slake a starving nation’s soil.
America’s pin puckered vein, the fight for the right
to the route of a pipe to the wealth of the Caspian Sea.
My subject is oil and the pity of oil. The stain
ingrained, the gold that taints men’s souls and snags
the purring world, that shags the cogs, that brains
the birds against the rocks, that chokes and gags,
that plumbs the wells of wanting, and the plain
evil of the needle and the drug.