A selection of my poems will be published by SilverWood in September 2013.
Sidmouth throbs to clash and blare.
The carnival is coming.
Down the street, towards the front,
deafening the small splashings of the tide,
rolls this extraordinariness of brass and chrome,
of million-watt illuminations, backdrops garish in
their blinding orange, yellow, violent blues and greens,
girls in gold and silver tights aboard their slow turntables,
waving like queens, at odds with their bucolic tractors,
rustic and haughty, first-gearing their shows for us.
They’ve been polished too –
no harrowing tonight!
Baby majorettes, their comforters at home,
kick and twist, twirl and throw things in the air.
A trumpeter comes fortissimo. Behind, for sure,
the saints are coming too, marching, marching on.
A grotto of elves appears, thinly clothed poor waifs
trying to forget the cold night breeze from off the sea.
An acrobat, the Scouts, the Guides, the Red Cross van,
the local sailing club’s blue boat, an am-dram float,
and hundreds more, a fancy dress parade
to paint the town with lights galore
and deafen us for this one night.
Later, when the pubs are shut
and the last float is home to bed,
the streets whisper with crisp packets
and ragged sheets of Sporting Life
stained with sunflower oil.
Along the road two polystyrene cups
cavort too late.