The lasting notes of glacier guitars, and
a wild guess in the blue-currant dark.
A clown hurled me joke words
covered in crud
from a 70’s phrasebook,
and stood outside in the sun
sometimes in a scarf.
on this strange side
of a postcard,
we were clouded in a hug
for a long time
in white wool.
Your surprising jumper
trekked across by husky dogs
and unreasonable in June.
You knew me more than I knew of you,
being fuzzy myself, while
they hung tinsel for
When your hair cut the roundness of two
shop display copies,
though inedible or without taste,
that’s still their logo –
the guitar over the big moon,
the clown entertaining the child,
the mother, a fleeced animal,
looking the other way,
who wants to press on with the shopping.
We saw it being made,
In the Italian way
In the Italian industrial estate,
by the company.
That’s their mascot.
A clown had sold me a guidebook,
too alert to dangers
but you seemed to know me.
I was dog-eared,
bright orange and fading,
I was a sight impaired guide
and, like smoke,
from a smoker’s home.
I asked you about my school once,
people remember the wheelchair
before I do.
I was taken back because you said “the sky was blue”
Anyone could have said so
if it was and that was true.
You said the grass was green and steep
And at its furthest you couldn’t hope to hear a bell.
That was true, could be said by anyone, but wasn’t.
My mind soon threw my head back – we started looking through
and if it’s glass, you can,
it was to remember, stranger,
“I was a teary child who laughed when not appropriate”
You don’t recall the detailed grooves in the Italian
bread…er…my state school,
your favourite subject, any of the other pupils,
a teacher’s nickname nor his ponytail.
You’ve also read the book about a film.
The sun enjoys making doilies from floral curtains,
and reflections can be unfairly imposed on you, writers do.
Because I got distracted
I let you go for ice-cream
when your eyes looked through that emblem
to unmelting sorbeto,
stopped in its tracks
across the street.
(When life gives you a clown scarf and a guidebook)
you’d found a new way of getting citrus
from lemon trees.
You left in pursuit of curiosities,
I said my bon chance and
wished myself “ciao, bella” slightly.
I had with my life returned to me,
just as crowds poured in.
Not everyone can stay seated for long
in this small Italian shop.