by Aidan Andrew Dun


I am the tortoise
trusting no-one
creeping fields
my occupation.

The stars on my roof
refer to man
but long before
that race I began.

My armoured paws
shift my form.
You day-trippers

I’m the old one
in time’s spiral dance.
Snake may slither
horse may prance

But I am the tortoise!
I live without fear
yet my insurance
is purchased dear.

I live beneath
my own gravestone
fear of everything
leaves me alone.

A lump am I
on legs that waddle;
not in cotton-wool
I swaddle.

It’s mineral, half-dead
my rucksack:
I live in the basement
under my back.

I hiss like a kettle
run like a worm
my hairstyle:
stone-age perm.

I’ve never had
the suntan of life
in my house underground
six windows suffice.

Ever since Adam
I’ve been isolated:
the modern world
is miscreated.

Shape of a cube
perhaps a meniscus
I’m not a frisbee
or a discus.

I take refuge
in the rectilinear
near a megalithic fort
on the island of Sardinia

Safe from heavy
human trod
the wrath of a
disappointed God.