Friday, 23 September 2016


Here is a revised poem. You can read the last draft here.

Taking the Tow Path from the Allotment

Just before the main road crosses over,
on a day so still,
the canal could be a ribbon window on a submerged world,
I see a tent upside down, under the water,
all taut with tensioned poles, slowly sliding by.

The days after the flood must have been like this.
The works of man obliterated,
less debris each sunrise.

I decide on a photograph,
reach for my phone,
then realise there is a man
camped under the bridge,
sat stock still in the chaos of his life,
and I stop.

He stares into the pellucid waters,
his face tells his story,
and I walk on,
past the three people with the bottle of Lambrusco
and little else,
back into my own life.
The beginning is now, I feel, clearer. The second stanza has lost the last two lines which took the poem off in a different direction and the last stanza has been tided up.
Thanks must again go to The Secret Poets for their invaluable assistance.
On Wednesday evening Juncture 25 met for the first time in a while and Gram Davis facilitated a fascinating workshop out of which this poem came.


How do I get there?
And where is there anyway?
I am here.
This is not the place I want to be.
[At this point please note:
I have no powers of reflection.]
His situation is alien to me,
I invent the reasons after I act.
I know there are other ways to live
so stop eating meat and start to drop acid
search for a door to else where,
anywhere but this northern industrial town.
I know there cannot be an afterlife
but I meditate twice a day
to seek an enlightenment I would not recognise
if it rang my front door bell.
There is a way out, but not his path,
he kept borrowing to pay what he owed until he ran away.
I will leave under my own steam,
but not just yet,
four years will pass before I find my trajectory.
This is very much the first rough draft. In the workshop we were asked to think about a specific year and to answer a number of prompts. I have no idea why I chose 1976. I am refining the poem- watch this space.
In view of this posts title I think a little Jackson Browne is called for. Here is Before The Deluge as performed by Moving Hearts from 1984.
I have to include a live clip of Christy Moore singing what has to be one of the most moving songs about political prisoners.

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