posted on September 4, 2007 at 6:26 am

in the dark little shop
the door closes on the busy world
and all is quiet
admidst the rubbery gaskets and malevolent toys
oranges and pieces of coal
pictures of some long dead queen
newspaper hats and brown socks
the bric a bracs all cracks
the plants green and spidery
costumes hang over shelves of old books
peoples lives who have vanished
people who disappear into the ether
as no one notices
someones squeezing the last bit of value out
even from odds and endings
a sideboard full of dead dreams
a suit with pockets of withered hope
novels with flowing dedications
the blue ink fading to brown
pictures of the going going gone world
books about boys adventures
playing cricket and jolly well stopping smugglers
a safari in africa bagging lions
being a ruddy good sport and a brick as well
foiling a bicycle thief and swimming at ramsgate
the school bully gets his comeuppance
and dad gets a surprise thats beastly
long gone dandies in cravats poncing around in a salon
a hardly worn dress thrown away by someones daughter in law
memories for sale
watercolour memories of summer days
trips to the coast with the whole gang
we ate and we drank and we laughed
we fished in the sea and we loved in the dark
we walked through green fields with our gals
we went off to fight the enemies
we were killed in foreign places and sadly missed
we returned to bitter winters and smoke and grime
we sat round the fire and drank cups of tea
and ate cream biscuits
where have we all gone now i wonder
where are all the old gang tonight
where are our old haunts
where are our old houses
where are the sunday drives and the elevensies with friends
wheres towser the spaniel and his wagging tail
wheres dads pipe and his paper and his masonic apron
wheres mums basket weaving class and her turtle oil
wheres mums recipe book from the old country
wheres mums special christmas decorations
wheres auntie pam and uncle reggies chevrolet
wheres that family who lived next door to them
here they are
bit by bit
piece on piece
odds over sods
nics under nacs
lamps and mirrors and cups and saucers
a portrait of muriel watson done in oils
a pair of posh shoes polished to a tee
ha ha look at that old camera
the one that took those kodachrome over coloured photos of us
at the lagoon
in our hotel rooms
jumping in a pool
waiting for a ferry
floating on a summer pond
getting soaked in a storm
getting up before dawn to start a long drive
big sister shaking you awake in the predawn black
its time she says
and the light goes on and you blink in the brightness
dad comes in drinking a mug of tea and smoking a fag
cmon on son he says
as you realise finally
today is the big day
the first day of the holidays that will go on forever
dad says
i want to get a good start before its daylight
and your sister says
yes do hurry up
and dads got the car all warmed up outside
and mums running round checking things are all off
and all the other kids are still asleep somewhere out there
as the sun comes up gloriously
you have already reached the mountains
you sip some hot chocolate from a flask
and fall into daydreams

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