Marcel’s Last Day in Marseille

Of the options available
late, early or punctual
I am usually late

Toward the port
I stride through
Old Marseille

I see him there
in familiar dark grey
suit made from linen

Sat outside his favourite café
Le Coq Bleu
a small coffee cup and saucer
sits on the table
newspaper is open
leg crossed over other

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Are You A Vampire Or Not?

is it childish to write about make-believe?
I am writing about vampires here

you didn’t find it funny when I raised
the subject of vampirism
and I’m still not exactly sure why
what nerve I touched there

the next time it came up
by chance
with your man present
you both exchanged a knowing glance
one that silently communicated something
what still I’m not sure

I realise the famous vampire didn’t come from around here
where you live

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Nobody Knows

Nobody knows
what’s happened to my nose
Apparently, I’m meant to know

Nobody says
‘Don’t you know
what happened to your nose?’

‘No’ I say to Nobody
‘but you know’
‘Yes’ Nobody says ‘just like you said’

‘Surely you must know too!
You don’t just lose a nose
not without knowing nothing about it.’

‘It happened a long time ago,’ I tell nobody
‘and I can’t remember anything about last week,
something I used to joke about

‘but now I know this to be true
I forget to laugh’
Nobody listens on intently

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What Was My Home

This is where I lived for many years
I recall
fighting back the tears
‘But Brink in Field – or whatever your name is’
you say to me
‘That’s no house that’s
something else’

I know
I know
It’s not much like a house
but that’s on purpose
You see
nobody visited me while I lived there and to be fair
that’s how I wanted it to be
That’s exactly how I wanted it to be

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The Elephant Woman

Anticipating social and political emancipation
in Late-Victorian Bristol
Cynthia the Elephant Woman
never wore a bag over her head

Instead
she educated herself
taking books off the shelf
on subjects as diverse as architecture
language teaching and the physical sciences

She never hid her ingenuity
to please
anybody

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Desert Lion Baseball Hunter

As a child, Orlando enjoyed wide open spaces
How, a sense of his existence within vast voids, he felt some significance
As though, his very presence brought meaning to a place

Compensation, he never considered because he wasn’t that deep
for an otherwise meaningless and uncontrollable world

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Plastic Teeth

These plastic teeth of mine
I bought online

In the advert
the model’s own teeth
slipped easily inside
into a strip of plastic teeth

First the top ones
then the film cut away
and the bottom ones were fitted
In the third scene
the model looks elated
is filmed pretty close-up
to the recording camera lens

They look great
the teeth
Amazing!
Stunning!
Uniform and the whitest white!

The model’s face is lit
The model looks elated

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St Lonely-Heart

I lived alone
Sunday morning,
awoken,
I watched,
as a bright burst of shimmering light entered the bedroom,
and a vision appeared
Just like how we are told they do

I said “Who are you?”
I answered myself,
“You’re an apparition of a saint,
aren’t you?”
The figure emerging,
acknowledged my statement-question,
with a bow of the head
“Patron Saint of,
what?”
I asked

“This,”
the Saint spoke with a marginal echo,
“is of no importance”
“Maybe not for you,”
I said,
“but maybe for me it is,
giving credence to my story,
for when I tell others,
about when a vision of Saint So-and-So appeared before me”

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