& neither

wasn’t looking

for a lady with white wings

come down to rescue me

& neither

a worn-out truck stop angel

hanging on

just something please

to be in between

not bothered about shop-worn

maybe seen

been in a rodeo two

as I was hardly fishing

with fresh bought worms

line that had seen

a season or so

thinking though

possibly we could build

something might last

for a while

few years or more

on the high plateau

I would live there tomorrow

that light yellow

adobe place in the desert

just off the side of the road

I was passing thru’

caught by the beauty

on the high plateau

but how

I’d live there

I will never know

would there be a living

to be had?

50 miles each way

to the store

nearest bar

people to get on with?

& the thought of that

nibbles away at me

every day

drab

living in squalor

peeling wallpaper

bare patches in the carpet

holes in the lino

the penance for being poor

& I fought this every time

covering walls with pictures

cut from magazines

finding half tins of paint in the trash

garment district remnants

for curtains wall coverings

in make & mend

having the time of no money

to wander look to find

drawing on walls shapes

colours circles triangles oblongs

interlocking as poverty art

anything but live with the drab

as constant reminder

of no money

broke art but art

when it barks

are you avoiding me?

she asked plain

capturing me over the fone

Sunday morning coming down

no hello

how are you’s? nothin’

just a launch straight in

never mind the weather

the time of day

I let her hang a few seconds

gather my senses

there are people

I say

who will kick the dog

then complain

when it barks

& the silence grew

but for breathing

then I heard the little click

leaving me

to go about my day

Saturday afternoon

side street café having coffee & cake

one of those weekly shopping trips

that you try to enliven with coffee

& then

the cult came in

a happy chirping troupe of teens early 20’s

delighted in meeting up again

to be arranging their next stunt

advertise everything they stood for

aims objectives world change

& I knew if I were to say

how is the cult?

they’d be angry with me my temerity

didn’t I know they were doing the right things?

& we could gently point out

they were wearing a uniform

everybody not in was out was wrong was stupid

were a bunch of neo fascist nazi capitalist pigs

but no

when I was on their fringes

albeit a different group different time

I too would not have been happy

to have these my life examined

even if it were true

so not being an old fool I let them be

let time itself decide

The Parisian salon

mid evening at a party a ce soir affair

to which I had not really been invited

but made welcome as a friend of friends

it was made clear too I was in a high-end apartment

a Parisian salon dating back the 16th century

in a desirable neighbourhood the 6th arrondisement

while I was listening I was watching my reflection

there in the mirrored glass doors one of 14 they said

recognising I looked on the way to being drunk

but maybe I was just tired from the days long drive

the large glass of red in my hand gave clues tho’

I saw also the pretty girl I was with who loved me

or so she said whenever the right occasion came

but I could see her checking herself there more than me

& knew clear I’d be leaving her if not today soon

people were talking to me asking pertinent questions

I should be paying for my company by being witty

tho’ I no longer felt bright in that long white room

of overstuffed chairs antiques & those high-flying people

who all toiled in institutions with letters as logos names

I needed to be in a bistro or a workers bar with a beer

thirst sucking on cheap red tasting the atmosphere

but here I was just one more to be networked used

brought into the I know a man who can syndicate

nobody took my number because I was passing through

& glad as I was to have been there to have seen

I was pleased at the end in a cab burning thru’ the city

looking for les deux magots Shakespeare & company

with the Seine glistening black slipping below

taking everything away

job for life

in of itself this wasn’t a bad job

working for the government

one week 7 ‘til 4 the next 10 to 6

there wasn’t even a punch clock

everybody there male female

was a government man

softly sucking up the easy work

easy shifts coffee on tap

& I could feel myself easying down

getting fat between the ears

slower of thinking on the doze

then one morning the worm turned

I rang in well

I’m feeling well today won’t be in

when I’m sick again I’ll be there

& that nailed my colours to the mast

they never looked at me the same way again

telling me over this is a safe job for life

don’t go rocking the boat

& now

all of that is gone

making the lie out of a job for life

all of them made redundant

but by then I was long gone

off being well elsewhere

inside the door

on the mat lay this little card

call detective smith on 3213241

which of course I ignored

& sure enough a week later

another one appeared

& i felt sure nothing good

could come from this

so I called her on that number

she wanted to know about a spine

a human spine that was found there

on my old place out in the country

where had it come from whose was it?

you know the drill

& I told her I had no ideas as I didn’t

the person there before had been a nurse

maybe she could help?

& I know whose bones I wanted it to be

but I hadn’t had the spine at the time

to drop him put him in the ground

tho’ I feel sure his would not have been found

to be sure I called an old neighbour

& disappointingly my old enemy

was still walking around

Rude AF

why can’t they just let me be

pulling in different directions

catching trains buses

destinations I don’t want to go

but I need to have somewhere

to live dream sleep eat

& these people

only acting for themselves

Rude AF in their desires

feed me feed me give me

offering nothing back

but the idea I should want

to be the one looking after them

& when I try to rewrite the rules

the anger comes in waves

how dare I change how life is

become just another fool

without a clue

there are no mistakes

this irate fella with a dead poets name

on the fone berating me

being the homewrecker

for fucking his wife

& when I ask for a name

that only enraged him further

seems I’d put my number

in a book of poems I gave her

the other night

I say yeah I remember

giving no further details

in case he wants to bring a knife

I put the fone down

after denials protestations lies

& later she calls to say sorry

for the call he’d made

by mistake forgetfulness

she’d left the book lying around

& he being jealous had found

there were no sorrys apologies

for not having told me about him

the fella with the name of a dead poet

maybe that too was a little mistake

& I say yeah sorry gotta go its late

& she

has the nerve to be the one upset