Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Things To Do When You Arrive In Town

My friend and poetry hero Ross Sutherland, many moons ago, wrote a poem called Things To Do Before You Leave Town. This is the other side of the story.

Attempt to unpack everything
You've never used
And never will,
But you'll keep in a box anyway.
Spend four hours on hold
To Virgin Media, wishing you knew
Which bag your hands-free kit was in.
Check the toilet seat.
Read the mail of people
You will only ever know
By their first initial.
Divide local newsagents
Into those you will shop in,
And those you will use for porn.
Find something creepy
Behind the radiator:
A bloodstain, a map of Ancient Persia.
Stare out the window.
Give names to the cats on your avenue.
Walk the streets,
Taking special notice
Of the cracked paving stones,
For late-night celestial navigation.
Note the bookies, the offies,
The places that sell pizza,
The chippies that are open on Mondays.
As dusk falls, look nonchalantly
Into the living-rooms of neighbours.
Do not attempt to ring your mother.
Do not attempt to ring your ex.
Do not attempt to find a prostitute -
You cannot afford one.
You can still prop up a bar
Where somebody's playing guitar,
Get drunk for two hours
In the barman's flat,
On stolen brandy,
Before realising he's a little bit weird.
Come sunrise,
Go, and smoke a joint
At a point
                      That makes no sense at all.

No comments:

Post a Comment