Canto CLXXXV

That Polish bar was once an Irish bar
where whisky-wizened Kerrymen would stand
at the doorway while watching passing cars

a dying rollup twirled within their hand.
Zoom out a moment, then you’ll see the curve
of Art Deco brickwork, the rooves that stand

on twirling pillars, you might just perceive
that this was once a place of aspiration,
a place for classy, effortless reserve

spread out beneath the tower of Park Royal station.
See the raised flowerbeds, those tangled shrubs?
I planted them myself as a young man,

half dying of the flu, some nasty scabs
forming around my nostrils, sweating buckets,
returning home for bed and not the pub.

If only I knew then that I would pass it
on the coach to Oxford, later in life,
feeling slightly content, slightly past it,

my first child snug within my snoring wife.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. peter litton
    Mar 04, 2012 @ 11:36:55

    Each poem is different and the thing that grabbed my attention here was the words. (whisky-wizened, art-deco, twirling, perceive, snug, snoring)

    I guess there is no point in trying to write poetry if you don’t enjoy the feel of words.

    Reply

  2. Niall O'Sullivan
    Mar 04, 2012 @ 13:01:53

    I’m quite proud of this one, it comes the closest to what I tend to do with a lot of my free verse poems, but I think that the form makes the movement between things smoother than I normally make it.

    Reply

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