if the coast was clear

man would come round

Wednesday nights

ask if I’d go for a beer

like he did not know

I had to go out for work

like I did not know

he was checking

if the coast was clear

for him to see my ex

take her out on the town

get her drunk which she liked

drag her into his home

& I didn’t care

about any of that

he was welcome to her

she was welcome to him

what was not welcome

him thinking I was stupid

to not notice

see his shitty motives

clear

dig it

I think it was Emmett Grogan

gave me the nod

don’t bother with the tv

buying the papers

if the government

wants you to know something

they will make sure

you find it out

& the man had it right

on this if not other things

find out for yourself

go stand on a corner

any street any town city

& the first fool comes along

opens their mouth

will tell you

what you need to know

are doing wrong

wearing saying looking

& of course

how the sky looks today

like you did not know

dig it?

passing thru’

top of the mountain

Spanish village

where the old women

still wear black

the old men

sit on chairs & watch the world

us going by

I guess there were

a couple of thousand souls

& my girl says

I could live here y’know?

yeah yeah somewhere here

there’s a kid got a room

posters on the walls

places they wanna go

because they hate

this one horse town

being stifled everyday

what you see as tradition

to them is repression

& her face turns away

looks out the window a while

says: but I’m not that kid

ok?

you know it

as you walk through the door

an old fashioned pub or bar

walk right in pull up a stool

& wait for the stories to happen

maybe the barman

is fucking the help

she got out of hand

slapped her or she slapped him

& the awkward descends

as Harry comes in Bob slips out

he’s doing Harry’s wife

& leaves a couple of drinks paid

to keep him there for a while…

the lush crowd hogging the stools hate

the one on the way home

wait for the pizza on the corner person

passing through strangers crowd

but smile & talk about ambience

how to get to places in the city

in the hope of a free drink

& somehow

this feels like home

black iron

these Spanish spurs

black iron

on my black gringo boots

with black leather stays

chrome rings to flash

bought in Guadalajara

from the vaquero shop

closing down sale

that now create sparks

on low long curves

as we sweep bends

into the night

& she asks

is this why you bought them?

not getting yet

we are the last cowboys

riding steel ponies

heading into the dark

keeping traditions

alive

I held on

though nothing much changed

day camping with Claire

aged twelve

couple of sticks & a tarp

hiding from the sun

the whole wide world

within

& I knew clear

I wanted something from her

felt strong urges

even if I knew not what for

we kissed cuddled

& I felt something

outside inside totally new

even if

I did not know

what these feelings were

but I held on

through the years

different hidings

different women

knowing I wanted

felt something

even if I did not know

what these feelings were

corporate needs

had a meeting

one I had to lead taken months

to put together feeling nervous

felt the need go sit just before

& not paying attention

my cock pissed thru’ the gap

between seat & porcelain

got my pants all wet down the front

soaked my drawers

I abandoned those there & then

held my work bag across me

walked in sat pulled my chair up tight

just as everybody else filed in

tried to carry on as ever

uncomfortable sitting in stink

& nobody said a word

while I checked for steam rising

wondering if they could smell me too

while we discussed team strategy

the need for honesty in meetings

I pondered on this

how that might not be useful right now

but we got through all of that

into the tedium of team roles

who was suffering who was not

& I let them all file out

made it to the nearest store

bought new pants & drawers

hit the work shower hot

bagged up my old pants for home

went back to the room turned up the a c

finally got some lunch

& sitting eating people came over

how’s things? got any news?

yeah I said yeah not much

& I can laugh about that now

but there was a time

I’d put corporate needs in front

of my own dignity

Proverbs 26:4-5

mooncalf they’d call me

because I was indeed a fuckwit

never mind a fool and his money being

soon parted

I was born always to be the right Charlie

acting the giddy goat

dumb as a box of rocks

crazy as a loon

howling at the moon

speaking only

because I felt I had to say something

in rooms full of wise men

offering nothing but sage advice

which I could never take

not being the sharp enough tool in the box

simpletons being like that a sandwich short

for the picnic just big bonehead chumps

shmucks never understanding dipstick rules

& if I held on to anything

it was that I was just a slow learner

hoping against hope

to one day get smarter

pass as one of you

trollop

she’d make me forget most nights

in the best possible ways

coming over about ten

bottle of vodka pack of cigarettes

but other nights

she’d start to weigh in around midnight

the booze having taken hold

get all jealous of me & other fictitious women

all in her sozzled & I’d forget

just who I was dealing with here

get to defending

other times I’d be sensible right away

hey you’ve come here

from your husband putting the kids to bed

if you were mine & mine alone

that’s a conversation for then

but the booze had taken hold

her flights of fancy made her crazy mad bold

the screaming would begin

& I’d have to ask her to stfu or leave

my rented rooms top of the house had other tenants

sick of the madness I’d invited in

I’d get crazy too being called these vicious things

& I called her a trollop

which broke the deadlock she started laughing

who calls that these days? but I knew & she knew

that’s exactly what we were dealing with here