The art factory

The art factory

There’s an industrial hum
At the art factory.
You can feel how far we’ve come
At the art factory.
There’s a production line
Where every organ beats in time
With the precision of a mime;
There’s every flavour of chewing-gum,
And all three types of wine.
Thanks for asking, we’re doing fine
At the art factory.

They used to make tinned soup
At the art factory,
But now we can another kind of gloop
At the art factory.
Life is bourgeois in the booth;
But there’s a veil of sorts that lifts
When the gaffer whistles shifts,
And we pigeons fly the coop
To the coup d’état of youth,
From the cutting of a milky tooth,
From the art factory.

There’s a momentary lapse
At the art factory
When the sunshine glints through gaps
At the art factory.
We see things in a new light:
These coloured dots we paint
Suddenly seem so frail and faint,
But the foremen in their flat-caps
Remind us that this isn’t true light:
More a simply-will-not-do light
For the art factory.

A man once smelt a rat
In the art factory,
So the man spray-painted that
On the art factory.
Now that man works in the next booth
Painting rats on a cup and saucer.
On his lunch break he reads Chaucer,
Eats cakes that will make him fat,
And makes remarks markedly uncouth.
But people hate to hear the truth
At the art factory.

There is obsolescence inbuilt
At the art factory;
An unshakeable sense of guilt
At the art factory.
I am here for my career:
I keep my head down, do my job;
Pull this lever, turn that knob.
But when I cower beneath my quilt,
Sweating alcohol and fear,
I feel I’ll never be far from near
To the art factory.

Appears in:
Mistaken for art or rubbish [2013]


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