Another terrific Poets’ Corner Folkestone event last night, at the Lime Bar for the first time. We have one more this year- Dec 9th at Steep Street Coffee House, Old High Street between 5 and 6pm. Christmas/seasonal theme.
This is called Yearning for Love
These days we begin our infrequent meetings
With smiles and touches, near-ecstatic greetings
As though it’s showtime after far too few rehearsals
We exchange banalities, step apart
To say Let me look at you- what’s the art
You have of staying young and beautiful?
We tell each other that we didn’t prefer
This cafe when it was cheap and cheerful-
Its smell of bacon frying, sound of Radio One
We like, we say, the way they’ve done it up,
Play punk music as background noise;
And, as we sit and stir our cafe noirs
I just about make out Patti Smith snarling
We don’t need your fucking shit
And we laugh as if it’s funny for a bit
We used, I’m certain, to be adamant
That prose was a hardly-spoken-of, distant
Relative of poetry, the real thing –
Our lives, we meant, were poems, all moments
Heightened, all nights red, red roses
No-one would ever say My life’s like prose
These days we choose our words more carefully
“I like your coat”, I say; “it suits you”.
Its lapels, its pockets, its buttons, the way it
Holds your scarf to your neck, the way it
Comes down to your knees. Once a coat
Was a thing to get quickly out of
Its warmth and colour of no interest to me
We’ve been through what we’ve seen and what we’ve read
How you finally cleared your credit card debt
How the lump in your armpit was benign
We agree how sweet it is that all is well
I notice they have games- we could play Scrabble?
When you think that once…aren’t we terrible?
We say goodbye like mourners on Good Friday.
I get all the warmth of your coat. Don’t be a stranger.
We must do this more often. No. Really.