By Robin Cowpertwait
Published by Crazy Quilt Bouquet in 2011
Review by Jack Little, UK/ Mexico (Published in issue 26)
Cowpertwait’s self published collection, Lineage looks at family life and illness; growing up and questions of identity. This micro review provides three of Robin’s poems from the collection. My favourite poem in the collection is “Goal Posts”.
If it was sunny,
No match for the telly,
You’d be Pele
(even though you were a racist)
on Woodthorpe Park;
until it was dark
I’d be Gordon Banks.
If it was raining
You’d be Tommy Lawton
(even though I didn’t know him)
with balloon ball, radiogram goal,
crowds in the hall;
until it was tea
I’d be Gordon Banks.
Better than never,
Whatever the weather
In kit too big then small,
With gloves and eye patch
(yes, even after the car crash)
I’d still be Gordon Banks.
Another enjoyable poem is Tour of Duty which remarks at the feeling of returning home.
Tour of Duty
Measured in miles and pubs
cross country to old haunts,
inebriated ghosts prop bars
- well oiled stories spilt –
repeating former glories.
Old flames wink and flicker
shared knowledge, secret histories
pass over the bittersweet foam.
then old adversaries step in
and shake too late. Time to shoot
back into hometown’s
safe old stomping ground,
find our elicit parking space
then off to the market place
- better get a bat on –
for just one more pint
of mixed before we split
as the last bus pulls out
to shouts of tek care me owd duck,
good riddance – good luck!
Another stand out poem is Bad Joke
It was calculated for impact.
To curb distraction, get a reaction,
wind you up off your death bed.
But it’s not good joking apart
to simply reminisce, take the piss,
pour it down the drain then point the blame
at someone else instead.
And there’s no point now in asking
if you want another one for the road
ahead your journey into the unknown,
your last trip – inevitably ill-fated.
We’re all well: over the limit, fed,
bladdered, pissed often,
and soiled. We all want what’s best
for you, for us, for happiness and wealth,
so all I can do is drink to your ill-health,
write another poem you’d have despised
and wait it out until your demise.
Robin Cowpertwait lives in Devon, UK. His poems and short stories have been published in South Magazine, Candelabrum, Cynic Magazine and The Ofi Press Magazine. He is the author of Pam Naps and has published a poetry collection titled Lineage. He is also a musician and painter.