Thursday, 17 June 2010

The first 800 or so words of a long form poem I have just started...

First splinters of bright grey skies
Fracture the ragged curtains,
We view our hero. He lies
Eyes open, mind uncertain.
Swivels in his bed sheets,
Launches torso upright,
Rises to his shaky feet
And switches on the light.
He tumbles down the corridor
And into the grungy shower,
Slaps on shampoo and conditioner
Flicks the switch for extra power.
Steam sticks to the mirror,
Bubbles cling to his tan skin
His woken hands grasp silver
Rails, as he starts to dry again.
Checking out his reflection,
He pulls on PRPS jeans,
De Vines with red’n’black sections,
XL T-shirt by Supreme.
New Era tops his head,
Screwy coils tip down the sides,
He scoops up his iPod
And makes his way outside.
The apartment sits atop
The concrete filing cabinet,
Renovations halted
Coz the council can’t afford it.
Sweeping down the stairs,
He kicks needles to the side,
Foil wraps and burn holes
Cooling right beside.
Body in the playground,
Face tilted to the sky,
He listens all around
To the sounds of the city.
Welcome moments of horns,
The low thrum of trains,
The fabric of silence torn
From wherever it remains.
He pulls a ready joint from his hip
A plastic lighter from his pocket,
Wedges the roach between his lips,
Flicks the switch and lights it.
He inhales deeply,
Still listening to the music,
Letting it run sweetly
Never getting sick of it.
Kid Cudi starts to play
‘Pursuit of Happiness’ in his hand,
He raises fist to ear and says,
‘Hey, whattya up to, man?’
‘Hey T, I’m just hangin
down the skatepark with KB,
come check it out, it’s bangin
can’t tell you, you gotta see.’
‘Sure thing Dan, I’m just goin
ta grab a bacon’n’egg sarnie.’
‘Bring some weed with ya dude.’
‘No worries, I gotcha covered.
Anyway I ain’t rude
Enough to show up empty-handed.’
‘Sweet, laters seen.’
‘Yeah, catchya in a while.’
Blank goes the screen,
T gifts himself smile.
One bacon’n’egg with ketchup
And a bunch of tube stops passed
T manages to catch up
With Dan and the boys at last.
The clash and scrape of trucks
Chewing on metal coping;
The familiar noise of skateparks.
The music of kids coping,
With the shit that days deliver,
At their feet every single day.
The sounds of escape forever,
Or at least some time to play.
Clap hands, bump shoulders,
The greeting’s the same
Whether younger or older,
T just plays the game.
‘I got that shit you want,’
He whispers with a smile,
His light, brown face gaunt,
But healthy all the while.
‘Nice one mate - damage?’
‘Tenner to a mate,’ he mumbles.
Dan hands Darwin’s image
To T. Behind a kid tumbles
From his board onto the floor,
The board goes rumbling off
Towards the park’s far corner.
Dan lights, breathes, coughs,
A goofy grin lights up his face,
T smiles right beside him
Then hops on his deck to chase
Easy pleasures from the rim
Of a halfpipe and a death box,
Pushing off and surging forward,
Hits the lip, the back truck locks,
He flicks the board then rolls backwards.
A single, fluid movement,
A ballet of wood and steel,
T times every single moment,
Every second has its appeal.

Not much makes him smile

Like a concrete playground,

He often dreams of miles

Of asphalt all around;

An endless landscape

To be skated and enjoyed

To grind, to scrape,

Every step and rail employed.

He pulls up beside the entrance,

Yanks his phone from his pocket,

Marie’s ringtone: Cheesy trance.

A booty call, fuck it.

He thinks hungrily to himself

As he puts it to his ear,

He’s been fucking her on and off

For the best part of a year.

‘Hey where you at right now, sugar?’

Her syrupy voice enquires,

‘Just skatin’, so not too far.’

His libido starts to fire.

‘You wanna come round and hang,

keep me busy for a while?’

‘Sure thing, I’m up for a bang’

He responds with an eager smile.

He flick the board off the floor

And catches it in his hand,

Hustles towards the door

That leads from the enchanted land.

‘Laters Dan,’ he calls over his shoulder.

A muffled response drifts

From between the human boulders,

He exits and his world shifts

Back to partial reality,

Market stalls and criers

Appealing to shoppers’ vanity,

Randoms thrusting out flyers.

T ignores every single bleat,

The real is without his mind,

As he treads the grubby, cobbled street

Leaving the tattered morning behind.

He enters the bowels of Notting Hill Gate,

Giving his soul to the underground,

Praying to the hollow, metal potentate,

And its familiar rumbling sound.

His world becomes clad in black,

The Ramones scream into his ears,

He shuts his eyes and leans back,

Letting the city steal his years.

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