Thursday, January 01, 2015

Notes for a new poem

Our house in Old Woking was a non-house among the shambles,
Opposite the church where campanologists pulled random ropes.

My wife was in Germany, and I was looking after my parents' dog. On the morning of New Year's Day, walking past the rehab clinic at the end of the road, I heard loud sobbing. A man was standing alone, facing the high brambles at the entrance to the footpath. I could see his shoulders rising and falling with each sob. As I got nearer, the dog began to bark, and I remember saying something like "Are you OK, mate? Mate?" It was an odd expression for me to use, mate, and a silly question. He didn't turn around. He didn't answer. He just kept sobbing.