Poems by Jim Conwell, UK (Published in Issue 26)
The tools of my trade: a computer, a dictaphone, pens, paper.
Here I am ready for work.
I must now find the street where the poets congregate, hoping for a day's start.
Someone in Greenwich needs a gang of poets for three days.
A new building, not quite finished without the 'pomes'.
But I have already missed the lorry.
It is 8.30 and I should have been here at 6.00.
I am left with the men leaning on the railings, blowing cigarette smoke into the traffic.
Locked out of our digs now and facing the rest of the day yawning before us.
The Old Cowshed
We took the stones away, one be one.
Heavy stones they were but we loaded them on the truck
which had backed carefully up the boreen
and then sat there cold and quiet as you like.
Machines do not have souls.
They do not have sinews.
They do not shift their weight, toss their heads at flies,
or breath vapour in the cold air.
The work was hard and we would be rid of these stones.
What? Did you think, we would store them?
We had no use for them, I tell you.
Was something lost? I don’t know.
I hear the wind moving up the fields,
strained through the high trees that still stand over there
behind where the hay shed used to be.
But there is no wind and the trees do not move.
Perhaps time moves like the wind.
And the generations of people cross this land like the air travelling.
We have taken away the places,
dismantled them stone by stone.
Here, take this fork and come and help me.
If we don’t lift that hay today,
the weather will close tomorrow
and we might as well leave it then.
Jim Conwell lives and works in London, England. With an original background in Fine Art, he has worked in the field of mental health for the past 25 years and four years ago, began to write poetry.