Thursday 17 March 2011

Sestina Day 4. Advice for Alien Spies.

Well, when people like my new friend Kiri give me keywords like ketchup, monocle, birdbath, squash, gargoyle and alienation, it's not going to be the most straightforward of poems.
So, this sestina has a backstory. A race of Gargoyle-like aliens have sent spies ahead to integrate into human society prior to a massive invasion. The aliens require high levels of sugar and salt to survive in our atmosphere. The following is a transcript of the instructions issued by the mothership to the Gargoyd spies.
This also seemed to good time to venture away from the safety net of iambic pentameter. Um... enjoy...?

The best thing for blending in quickly is ketchup
Eat it on all meals. Please wear a monocle
To seem more eccentric. and also a birdbath
Is there for the birds, it is frowned on to squash
Yourself into a birdbath and squat like a gargoyle.
Avoid all sensations of alienation.

To combat the nausea and alienation,
We can't stress enough that your best friend is ketchup
Dont be dismayed if you find that your gargoyle
Features are showing, 'cause wearing a monocle
May hide the seams if you totally squash it
Right to your eyeball. Hang out near a birdbath

We're told older humans enjoy watching birdbaths,
That viewing small birds combats alienation.
Some elderly humans play games such as squash
But this isn't compulsory. Stick to the ketchup
And those dressed as males may favour the monocle
You'll be observed by our surveillance gargoyle

Our cameras are hidden in each churchyard gargoyle
And there is a microphone under the birdbath
The tracking device that's concealed in each monocle
Keeps you in touch with the Alien Nation
Replace vital sugars and salts using ketchup
We've found it delicious on butternut squash.

The humanoid species are easy to squash
Phase two will involve you reverting to gargoyle-
Mode and controlling the masses through Ketchup
For more on this plan stay in range of the Birdbath
And try to blend in, because alienation
Will hinder our plans. We can see through your monocle.

When battle commences you'll find that your monocle
Serves as a mind control beam that can squash
All the human resistance of Alien Nation
And soon, when the dominant species is gargoyle
We'll laugh at them, twitching like birds in a birdbath
And then we will feast on them, smothered in ketchup.

The Alien Nation needs you and your monocle
To utilise Ketchup when starting to squash
All the humans. Each Gargoyle report to your birdbath.

My mind worries me.

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