Poetry Rivals 2016

Taking poetry from the page to the stage!

Things To Come

Voodoo maraca-shook beat of an indicator
ticks in time with a nodding line of trees
that wind noosed by a loop of train track.
The rest of my car whines along too, as a spider hangs
between wing-mirror and wet drivers’ side door.
Tiny, soused, demon-black hobo traveller
moving with what I endow it; its web
a useless, oily, return-entry chute
bobbling on a false flow of air.
On the passenger seat there’s a bag stuffed with Chinese food:
Chicken balls; spittle-thick sweet-and-sour;
my half-arsed conscience food of tofu in satay sauce.
Each concoction
fumes in its plastic-box,
gassing the windows with an exotic stench.
As the engine vibrates,
spiced shaky droplets descend
in bomb-runs to damp-blast the rubber seals.
With a hard lock left I am left facing an old person’s home
where I see them behind glass, suffering
the reverse exorcism
of pigs’-blood-thick children’s voices
long after the little turds should have gone.
Lord knows why it is that they must bear them,
showing off how they
will continue to exist when
these trapped shakers have passed on.
Luckily I can blot out their misery with Our Jimi.
If I don’t meet you no more in this world . . . Will I? Will I?
I’ll meet you all on the next one . . .
. . . And don’t be late. Don’t be late!
Beautifully put.
So I leave that universe and get stuck in the next one
at a set of traffic lights
where middle-aged people
hum hate from their exhausts.
Our lives probably are about recurrence.
Which is depressing
as the car lopes into its ninth pothole.
The same fate again and again. No rest and no ending.
Horny little animals, snatching at scraps; living and suffering and passing.
Unbearable. But then again . . .
just think of the Sahara and think of vastnesses.
Just think of the wasted girdle of stars
spread wherever you look.

Jim Clarkson