Phallus impudicus

Who’s been laying
a trail
of mozzarella balls
like a gourmet Hansel & Gretel?

Lurking in the soil
lucent and pale
like eggs thrown
from the nest pre-boiled.

You nudge one
with your booted
toe and
it explodes,

spitting olive sludge
at your shin.
Oh shit! What
is that?

Are you infected now
by some alien virus?
Will you be forced
to bear the offspring

of that
green jelly?
I frantically search
white balls woods full slime.

It’s ok, I say.
They’re mushrooms.
Larval-stage
mushrooms. Harmless.

Lucky we got here
when we did.
The mature forms
look like rotting dicks.



Mark Grainger is a Brit living in Germany, where he translates financial reports for a living. He writes and translates poems to flex his creative muscles. When his output ballooned under the coronavirus lockdown, he started sharing ‘lockdown poetry’ on Twitter (@marktgrainger).

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