Final Battle

by Brian Routh

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Poem by Brian Routh


I was on my back


a voice

told me to move

I listened

holding my thoughts

holding my breath

a voice

told me

to move

told me

to push up

my hands


my arms


a breeze

brushed against

my face

sweet fragrance

filled my nostrils

I thought of the sea

a faint whisper

told me to push

to step up

push and step up

step up

into the world

the ominous sky

I thought of my mother

I thought of my father

light played in my eyes

my heartbeat

resounded in my skull

a faint whisper

a faint laugh

someone cried

my face was wet


step up


step up

I was soldier


on the edge

of battle

the final battle

from the depths

of my soul

came a shriek

a piercing scream

a flood of energy

surged through my bones

I was hurtling

through space

my arms

pushed out

in front of me

my legs

seemed to walk

I stepped up

and out through a door

out from the soil

I paused

I stood still

I was numb

in shock

my left arm

lifted its wrist

towards me

a watch ticked



the second hand


the minute hand


the hour hand


I turned

to face a door


I stepped through

the doorway

stepped into

an oblong box

I stood quite still

the walls

were covered

with small holes

the light poured through

I lifted an axe

high above my head

I let it fall

again and again

breaking the box

into fragments

I was hurtling

through space

I was screaming

and screaming

and screaming

bullets were hitting me

from every direction

I fell

to the ground

into the mud

I watched my blood


into the soil

I knew I was dying

I saw my watch

it's face broken

on my twisted

severed wrist

the light faded

the cold

began to get to me

I knew I was dying

boots and uniforms

moved across me

war torn faces

looked down at me

many hands

lifted me

carried me

lowered me

down into the soil

I saw the door

closing down on me

I saw the light fade out

the ticking stopped


I felt the ice

in my veins

insects crawled

over me

through me

I knew I was dead


released May 1, 2011
words and music: Brian Routh



all rights reserved


Brian Routh Leicester, UK

Since 1980 Brian Routh (Kipper Kids) has collaborated with and appeared with Karen Finley, Henry Rollins, Public Image, Genesis P. Orridge, Sex Pistols, Joanna Went, Eric Bogosian, Anne Bean, Bow Gamelan, Lol Coxhill, Evan Parker, Derek Bailey, Ian Hinchcliffe among others.
He has showed his digital movies at the Royal Academy and sound works at Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles.
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