Dinner at the chippy on Weston Road Codfathers. Mafia allusions, gangster, tongue-in-cheek Nod to Francis Ford Coppola But fish and chips, night after night?
Monday evening. Every pub kitchen shut. No restaurants Drive through the prefabs and estates, looking for food And fail. Boil up some pasta and grate on cheddar Sleep in the van, barely satisfied
Next morning in the lay-by, jot verbatim The words of a young man to his climbing companion Can you be fucked with more of these giant ciabattas? As they pack their rucksacks for Cheyne Weares
A new, potty-mouthed mob. Only a question of time, surely Before Portland gentrifies. It’s coastal, beautiful Well-connected with a magnificent climate But it’s an island, with its own code, and doesn’t need outsiders
Naranja! Naranja! tres euros, seis kilos Dutch you? English? juice eat – yes! – these – juice! you try – take, take! tomates? green, red? this – doesn’t matter! – medio kilo? lekker, lekker!
She proffers tissues for our sticky orange-hands but I’ve already wiped mine on my trousers Ha! where wife, wife? she mimes – slapping the air-husband who smears his shorts whilst always insisting
on wearing white. Siete euros cincuenta. We pay and turn then hear her call – Venga! two huge, yellow suckable lemons hitched up at breast-level – then! guttural laughter – she drops them lower – offers us, gratis, sour fruity balls
A couple of short poems made it to the Winter 2019/20 edition of Sheep Breeder magazine. They are starting up a poetry competition! Send all sheep-related poetry to the super-friendly email@example.com.
Head West, always. As the Joad family in Grapes of Wrath or Otis in Dock of the Bay. Adventurers, pioneers and runaways. The dreamers and desperate. Years ago, hitch-hiking the deserts, flagged a ride with New Jersey kids jumping bail. Headed to California. Drive West. Leaving Llanberis, light rain closing in on the windscreen, peppering the glass. Not forecast. But there it is. Nature of the mountains. Keep driving. Roundabouts. A bridge, squat and self-promoting. Irksome to the island, one would think. Centuries of the Menai Straits thwarting casual visitors and conquerors. Drive over. Look at the state of the tide. You’ve checked online. But seeing it, the mud or gleaming water, confirms the iPhone’s information. Drive on. Through the town. Beyond all conurbations. Beyond fields and into heathland. Sea beyond the passenger seat. Sea ahead. Only sea, and the end of the track where the road runs out. The Western edge of Wales. Crumpled cliffs, high cliffs, red cliffs, yellow cliffs, mud cliffs, crystal cliffs, lichen cliffs, loose cliffs, clean cliffs. It’s all there. You can reinvent yourself, out West. Be whoever you like. Be who you are. Start again, each time, and hope for better results.
“…The trouble is, there is no one, simple, correct answer. We’re all looking for the Perfect Line. But that line can be smudged, chalked, rubbed out and redrawn depending on myriad factors including personality, gender, location, faith and time…”
It was an honour to model the Cape of Clouds, a community project gathering embroidered clouds made by women across the globe. Shaman, Trickster, Warlady? Thank you, Louise Gardiner, http://lougardiner.co.uk/projects/stitchACloud/stitch-a-cloud.php.