it was late

I was talking loud

as I can do when wine drunk

aware with all tensions

as my words were not getting through

to my vino sozzled mob at the table

the death of the hippie my theme

giving in to passion writ large

the death of the hippie was an event

the Mime Troupe the Diggers

Emmett Coyote all the mommas

recognising hippie was done

over

taken up by the store greedheads

selling shit beads mandalas incense

paisley rags run up in sweat shops

too many kids had run away arrived

hoping to find a dream instead got hungry

exploited found the wrong drugs people

missed the message of inner being

but bought the fashion to fit in

never the hippie way

the substance the ideas were lost

in graphics music written words

& me you we were the losers

because there was a time when

love was all you need

& all that’s left is smoke dope

beads mandalas paisley patterns

not six

not six anymore

can’t tell aunt C to shut up

stop talking while she eats

not eight anymore

punching my men friends

to show that I care

has come to an end

not fourteen anymore

getting turned on

feeling the rush

from a glimpse of thigh

has gone

not twenty anymore

can’t do the sex thing

& then leave

those bad manners

got left at the earlier door

I’m not young anymore

the excuses the reasons

alibis

got changed along the way

with the expectation

of respect for others

even if that does not come back

we’re not children anymore

in the dark

nights we sat

pouring from a cheap bottle

judging depth by finger

talking slow

about nothing

but a brighter tomorrow

where we’d have coin

for the meters

better food booze

place to live

hoping against hope

we were worth better

than this

& then you left

with someone new

who could give you more

& then I sat alone

in the dark

for a while longer

though I had coin

for the meters

better booze food

place to live

tenuate

she’d go see the doctor

get her diet pills

say she was putting on pounds

turn those dark eyes on the dude

& the prescription

was cheaper than eating

we’d be pin eyed for weeks

dropping weight days nights

talking talking talking

going here & there

walking walking walking

& nobody would employ me

looking at those pinwheel eyes

that house is knocked down now

I went back to take a look

& the quacks won’t give out the dospan

no matter the fluttery dark eyes

all that beauty caught on the hook

hadn’t yet understood

one of those chance encounters

fella is talking in the street

got a cause to support

& he wants us to be just that

I stand & listen for a while

thinking of counters

support in equal measure

& as I clear my throat

to offer my pennyworth

he gives me a look

makes it clear

he’s taken in my shoes

lack of dress code

to suit his beliefs

& I close my mind too

walk on

& nothing had happened could bring them together

once a rich mans daughter

talking through a waterfall

or something between us

where I could see her yet

that I could never pierce

get to her close

tho’ we’d done

the between the sheets thing

she was there but not there

which had the irony

this was how it was in LA

when daddy summoned her

to his lonely canyon eyrie

his once upon a time rock star exile

every summer year to sit & listen

how his life was

& she’d fly back first class

clutching a fat plushy bear

& nothing had happened

could bring them together

I was relieved when she left

telling me I had nothing going on

that she could cling to

& a wise man

keeps his counsel

when words like that

get said

different rhythms

I met her one of those talking parties

the drink comes slow & everybody is looking at each other

she was a strong independent woman she told me flat

didn’t need no man had her own place job & car

it was this we’d fall out over but that’s later

we met a few times slept together some

& I thought we were kinda good friends

I had no plans for any future & she?

she was happy doing what she did & seemed happy at it

then the car misunderstanding thing happened

I had friends round at mine putting the world to rights

& she rang: my car has a flat ok I say you got call out?

nope where are you? you got a spare?

other side of the city & yes she did have a spare

ok I say call me if you have any problems

she turned up later all furious & angry

how rotten I was no damned good at all

seems I should have dropped everything

gone to rescue her fixed the flat

wait I say you tell me you’re the selfmade woman

told me straight a man should not take over

even offer to help in anything at all

unless requested by the woman

got your own house job & a car….

apparently I’m a damn fool too

(she said fucking idiot really)

Kumba yah….

They were a mixture

some french

some german

so they spoke in english

to understand each other

mixed in with Americanisms of course

& loud

to avoid mishears

misunderstandings

of course

which is irritating

if all you speak is English

a little French

a little german

& some Americanisms of course

because this is not your show

not your place

to correct their

mispronunciations

misunderstands

mistakes

mashups of languages

but god

do you ever want to

ghost II

the man thinks

very probably believes

he is talking to me

tho’ i notice

his eyes rarely meet mine

stray more often

over my shoulder

for anybody who might

be more interesting

can take in more of his shine

& I want to listen

hear what his soul has to say

& you know well as I know

I’m never gonna get that

he’d need be present

& that

like with so many other ghosts

pretending to be people

takes too much

of a strain to pull off

successfully