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A DRAYMAN`S DREAM: NEWCASTLE 1970

 

A saveloy for tea

and I think of Lichtenstein, in excess,

in Newcastle.

Five bridges and a haze of Brown Ale.

Scottish & Newcastle and a drayman`s dream

in a troubled city.

Winter congests the movement of traffic

where second hand light dims

the minds of officemen,

starves the greed of Aldermen.

Hoardings shelter

car parks behind women in bikinis

and soft light sprinkles over Percy Street.

Christmas is somewhere about.

Expensive toys for each

generation to play with.

Christmas crackers and

a tired old family joke.

A meeting between strangers,

frivolous over a pie and a pint.

Meaningless words of conversation

disappear in the mingle

of  cool black sweaters

and trouser suits.

A black and white evening

in the saveloy snack bar,

where tables are scratched with

expressions of discontentment

and a waitress cannot

erase the memory of the night before.

A bleak cold sweeps up from the river

and a weary horse

clatters over cobblestones to Gallowgate.

Long after St. Thomas` clock

manufactures midnight

and another dawn of a damp December day,

dreams evaporate.

A quiet war is being waged.

 

Poem: Geoff Holland 1970

 

 

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