Bus

Bus Shelter

We stand in stoic silence,
peering through perspex panels
for the bus with our number on it.

All shelters in time are visited
and we, waiting, occupy ourselves
with a thousand tiny distractions

until we see it nose slowly
around the corner, and greet it,
not with welcome surprise

but with wretched relief
and, as we feel the press of coins
in clammy palms, we wonder

whether this is a poem
about buses and bus shelters at all
or, rather, one about life and death

because that’s the kind of thing
that poets write about
and we climb aboard anyway

as it is warm inside
and this one has free wi-fi.

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Bus Shelter

We stand in stoic silence,
peering through perspex panels
for the bus with our number on it.

All shelters in time are visited
and we, waiting, occupy ourselves
with a thousand tiny distractions

until we see it nose slowly
around the corner, and greet it,
not with welcoming arms

but with wretched relief
and, as we feel the press of coins
in clammy palms, we wonder

whether this is a poem
about buses and bus shelters at all
or, rather, one about life and death

because that’s the kind of thing
that poets write about
and we climb aboard anyway

as it is warm inside
and this one has free wi-fi.

poke

“You just have to pokemon,” you said
in response to a question about the best way
to get Pikachu onto a bus.

The following week I saw him,
waiting patiently as the number twenty-six
pulled up alongside the bus shelter.

Paying heed to your words I began to poke him,
gently at first, like the unsure fumblings of an
awkward teenager worried about the crossing of the line.

Stoic indifference ensued. My poking became more
insistent, the testy tapping of a typewriter replying to
an overdue payment claim for a bill long since settled.

It was only when I began prodding his stripy behind
with my pipe that he turned and addressed me,
a Pokemon fire burning in his eyes, saying:

“I am actually waiting for the number four.
What need do I have to go to Watford?”