5 POEMS – DANNY D FORD

My American Friend
 
tried to be self sufficient
but instead broke
my mother’s washing machine
 
& her world collapsed
one Thursday evening
 
summer sun stoking her rage
 
single parents fear the god
of white goods
 
I tried in vain
to stop her insulting you
from behind glass doors
but she kicked you out anyway
 
and you went to stay with my brother
 
& later
when porn was found
on my mother’s pc
I let you take that bullet too
 
I never told you that
but fuck it
you were already gone
 
spending your days on sofas
beguiling British adult children
with your movie voice
 
plucking your guitar
for an African girl
with a Swedish passport
 
making Brandon hill a bedpost
teletext telling you
flights to Stockholm
were more expensive
than she’d let on
 




Photographers
 
The dark room
was open
to first year students
most weekday afternoons
 
often
there were three
or four of us
at a time
 
I thought
they were just concentrating
on the spindle
like myself
 
but I later found out
he was fingering her
 
right there
less than five feet away
 
while I was groping
for the fruits

of my labour

 


The Last Bastion
 
He has left
his lights on
 
Christmas
in late January
 
pale fruits appear
& disappear
 
and appear again
 
in the corner
of our bedroom
 
he is trying
to remind everyone
of better times
 
but instead underscores
the daily struggle
to keep track
of what the fuck’s going on
 
past present future
free sacred or sanitized
 
it all just becomes blink blink
 
blink blink
blink blink




blink blink

blink blink




Cataracts, Children & Star Signs
 
I hear a woman
on the street
talking to an elderly neighbour
 
trying in vain
to sell cleaning products
 
small talk can be
excruciatingly dull
cataracts, children
& star signs
 
I can’t help but sympathise
 
like spending the morning
in the biggest library on earth
 
but not a single word printed
on any of the pages
 
and a voice on the line
always on the line
demanding six quotes by noon
 
when I worked in sales
I would say I had an appointment
and go home for lunch
 
fat pasties in the microwave
and sports news
 
then my lunch break would end
and I would remain seated
staring at the laptop
 
sometimes looking at well shot photos
of beautiful women
without any clothes on
 
most of them doing silly things
like acting surprised by cushions
or leaning against doorframes
 
I was asking depression
if she would like to dance
 
but depression was saying
‘not now, let me just finish my drink’
 
and so I used to sit there and stare
humming along to the hit parade
 
the number one track
playing on repeat
 
your job just turned to shit, baby
what you gonna do for money now?
 




Provencal
 
We used to walk across
to this French pizzeria
that served thick slabs
of comfort
 
cheesy grease bricks
made good life rafts
 
I celebrated a birthday there
my brother
brought his new girlfriend
 
a secret Jehovah
gave me a fuchsia 
Bobby LP
 
and as we were leaving
I asked my brother
how things we going
 
he told me
he wasn’t sure
 
if his new girlfriend
was a man
 
‘but haven’t you slept together yet?’
I asked
 
‘Yes’ he replied
 

‘that’s why I’m worried’
 

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