Lady of the Bus

Her skin may need an iron’s once over,

Its pigment is brash and fuchsia.

But she smiles more than she did back then,

So why bother with that cosmetic nonsense?

Her day’s dictated by today’s timetable.

‘Lost’ doesn’t exist, ‘it’s adventure’, she insists.

Quarter to the hour, or ten past,

The maze of her head, sign-posted by

A free seat (complimentary, if that teenage scoundrel

gives up his.)

She’s a first-class voyager, companion to her wooden aid,

Clutched tightly like a hand to hold.

She has a favourite chauffer, but their presence is

unreliable,

Young enough to be her grandson,

But pretty eyes all the same.

Today’s audience don’t quite meet her gaze,

‘sorry for your loss,’

Something she can’t quite place.

Maybe she’s just forgotten her keys.

 

 

 

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The Illustrated Man

His canvas is withered; once a gallery display,

Now ‘distasteful’ graffiti on recycled paper.

If auctioned back then, they would’ve been collectible,

Now faded, only fluorescent in sepia

photographs.

 

Once young and kicking, but that’s forgotten,

as if his art’s backdrop was always creased mess.

Once complimented, they’re now ignored,

Like taboo patterns on fragile casing.

They’re not dated, out of fashion, archaic,

It’s the exhibition that’s aged, he’s sorry to say.

 

Long-sleeved shirts are preferable, as if

He’s wounded; an eyesore, black marks smudged

Illegible to the twenty-something critic.

He’s too old for regret in something

once sublime. Now, a stain he can’t fix,

an embarrassment, named ‘tattoo.’

 

An embarrassment, named ‘tattoo’,

Once sublime, now a stain he can’t fix.

He’s too old for regret in something

illegible to the twenty-something critic.

He’s wounded; an eyesore, black marks smudged.

Long-sleeves are preferable, as if.

It’s the display that’s aged, he’s sorry to say.

 

They’re not dated, out of fashion, archaic

Like taboo patterns on fragile casing.

Once complimented, they’re now ignored,

As if his art’s backdrop’s was always creased mess.

Once young and kicking, but that’s forgotten.

 

Photographs, now faded. Only fluorescent in sepia.

If auctioned back then, they would’ve been a masterpiece.

Now ‘distasteful’ graffiti on recycled paper,

His canvas is withered; once a gallery display.