Saturday, 29 September 2012

Bus notes 21

The bus goes steadily along,
carrying our reluctance, variegated.
        Sometimes there's no longing,
        no urge to anything. We stop,
        start up and move along again
        the routine way.
White, almost, of sky
makes looking a given business;
nothing weathered and no brightness
to speak of, no shining signs. Nothing.
        What I resent is us being
        on our usual form, dead common
        (even the pretty one or two).
We're tricked into a dull humanness,
made to sit still and be bored
for the duration, all samey without thinking.
        Even a little hurt, some small vile turn,
        wouldn't go amiss.
No chance of bliss, though.
        Press the bell in time and off you go.

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Which Side Are You On? [7]

Another Taken Shot

       So the dark haired boy
       lifts the megaphone and
       puts the set text
       through the mic.
       with fervour
       working to a purpose.

       The angle of his arm is fixed;
       a picture of marketable energy.

       And the girls’ eyes
       (they are all his type)
       go awandering
       across the empty map
       of his scrubbed clean skin.

Saturday, 22 September 2012

Bus notes 20

We're coming down the Priory Rd.
and beside us is the wall they built again.
The water's coursing still.
        It's the limits of
        a territory where
        we aren't for ever, past
        the bramble thuggery
        to the clipped green grass.
The Autumn light is harsh
and nothing seems to refract it;
its critical movement scans us as present.
        Then a few stops on
        two small girls watch
        the scenes recede, delighted.
The same light pours in
through their hungry pupils
and glisters beginnings, pictures bliss.
        Whatever kind of ghost I could become
        I remember myself a light starting
        once and faraway and waking up
        to the best games for making.


Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Which Side Are You On? [6.]

             Is it the thing
     to be noting down
              these filigree memos
           as the rain falls
              on the page
  and the ink runs

and uncolours?

      The words
             all there
           will not be read.

Saturday, 15 September 2012

Bus notes 19

She is reading her book
on becoming a doctor
with a cover done up
in nursery colours.
        I don't know what
        the sunshine from outside is for:
to light her aspirations?
        I know it won't 
        be reaching my seat today
        (which is fine). I'm folded
        in on myself and that's that.
Then the imaginary cancer appears
in a corner of me I can't get near to - 
        a somewhere, a shadow
        breathing in and out 
        all too regularly. 

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Which Side Are You On? [5.]

                    1997, the Union Club
                 on Pershore Rd.
                        a victory for someone
            or something

         We were mad
                      with the smuggled in Export
                 youngish monsters
        baring our non-activity
            unelected in our comic crowns
   bejewelled in theory

                Our faces didn't fit
                      and our shaved heads
                               our lapels
         with badges missing

     The word was SCORN (spilt ink
                           on nice clean sheets)
                  peeping out
                           from beneath our lids

         and the bunting coming down
      while we were idiot dancing
               shining like God watchers
             in the light of their laboured hate

              Then home again
                              home again
         vast in the back seats
                 declaring our sure sons’ love

                    As Mother drove
            we offered her
         strings of exquisite threats
                     for her unnamed enemies
             for mythed-up history
                       of slick class slights

              O that we might have
           voices that hurt
                      and shake so
                               red and wounded

            burning at the starting shot
                     to be revolting always and
               with our unbit tongues
                           like the best of animals

Saturday, 8 September 2012

Bus notes 18

At first I thought she was a nun
        but she'd just taken a scrap of blanket
        and folded it perfectly about her head.
In the seat beside me
the feline stink communicated,
a cloud in which she was hid.
        The white tendril hairs from her chin
        slid through the invisible jelly air
        that keeps the non-smiles fixed
        and became the wires
        for a writing hand for a while.
I couldn't shake the revulsion and so
I became a provisional worshipper
of her mystery.
        Today I can type an Amen in
        and a Yes with imaginary ink.

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Which Side Are You On? [4.]

A photo I took

       Look at the girl
       at the edge of the picture
       whose bluewhite fingers
       shade her eyes.

       Her dress drops limp
       from her collarbones
       in the still air
       to the demo's floor.

       When she tries
       to scarper, the hem snags
       on the frame’s edge;
       always figured before
       she can get gone.

       And she can’t ever
       make the words
       she wants to
       come out.

       To be seen
       or to be heard, noted
       or passed by;
       switches are clicking
       all over.

Saturday, 1 September 2012

Bus notes 17

Coming through the Calthorpe Estate,
the houses are crisp and white
and resting in the greenery.
        White, still and softly spoken,
        they tell what having is in Georgian style
as we're bussed in to our relative invisibility.
        Still, our work does have us clocked
        so we might show up somewhere,
        nothing much to speak of; counted.
Squirrelled away in the lusher shade of our heads
there's a faded, garish picture of a Lenten feast
going on forever, almost
as forgotten as we will be.