Big Bad Bus

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I’m on a bus, he said. It’s like that bus in ‘Speed’. It can never stop. It can’t slow down. It can’t pick up passengers. It tears through the countryside in a purple blur. You don’t get a chance to take it in. There’s no such thing as a ‘breather’. There are no rest stops. The driver never sleeps. You’re more hostage than passenger. I’m on a bus, he said. And the bus is me.

 

Lop-Sided Moon

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The bus shelter at the end of our street grinds its teeth at night.

Sometimes I sit with it, hold its hand, listen to its tale

of drunks and suicides,

of lycanthropes baying at the full moon,

of lonesome Lotharios weeping in their fists

 

I talk to it too about my problems

Of the jig-saw days when pieces don’t fit

Of the times when your heart races

Like a wildebeest on the veldt

But latches onto nothing.

 

After a while we both settle

 

and I head off home

beneath a lopsided moon.

 

 

The One That Got Away

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I tried writing a poem once about a running joke. It was just ahead of me as the best poems are. I sprang off my writer’s block and ran after it with my butterfly net and my blue bucket of hope; but I was out of condition and this one really had legs. It waved back to me as it disappeared in a cloud of dust over a nearby hill.

Strange Brew

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I love

The vivacity of verbs

The hulk of hard nouns

The ribaldry and racket of the non-standard

The irruption of oddities

The salty tang of sentences

A strange brew of language

Found from ‘Trainspotting’ to ‘A Clockwork Orange’

To the poetry and plays

of C J Dennis.

The vernacular.

Roads

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The great roads do not have them:

The Road Less Travelled,

The Yellow Brick Road,

The Road to Damascus.

Nor the vinyl ones:

John Denver’s ‘Country Roads’,

‘The Highway to Hell’,

The Beatles’ ‘The Long and Winding Road’.

Only the lesser roads have them:

The pot-holed, crumbling ones,

The ones we have to travel:

Road Works.