Deepening Winter – Gavin Wade & Paul Conneally

deepening winter
an intercontinental
ballistic missile
washing out the stains
from his underpants

Gavin Wade & Paul Conneally

from the ongoing series of tantwenga poems (tanrenga written via Twitter)

Notes
The first stanza, the first three lines:

deepening winter
an intercontinental
ballistic missile

are written by Conneally (Little Onion) on the news that North Korea, under their leader Kim Jong-un, on November 28th 2017, had test launched its most powerful intercontinental ballistic missile yet. It landed in the Sea of Japan. Wade then, using the technique of ‘link and shift’ adds his response to the first stanza in the form of a two line verse:

washing out the stains
from his underpants

There is a distinct shift from the first three lines to the last two with in this case ‘ballistic missile’ acting as a pivot line:

deepening winter
an intercontinental
ballistic missile

ballistic missile
washing out the stains
from his underpants

Together the whole might be greater than the sum of its parts the various juxtapositions taking the reader to new places whilst still in the same. The image, that of a North Korean woman newsreader extolling the virtues of Kim Jong-un and his nuclear missile programme, along with its text written freehand adds in another layer of possible meanings. Is she herself metaphorically ‘washing out the stains’ from Kim Jong-un’s underpants?

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