Litkicks Message Board Archive

Squirrels

Posted to Poetry




the rain came,
an equaliser for neurotic children,
and the tourists
huddled in the shop doorways
like blind pink mice,
portrayed in foulest foreign mood
by the suddenness of rain
so early in the afternoon,
and i myself,
being homeless, just digging with the boys
along the York walls,
smoking cigarettes and stronger,
was at a loose end,
so i popped into the newsagent
and gave my sleeve the treat of three ice-lollies,
Fabs, i think,
one for myself and a couple for the boys,
and the boys were pleased and sucked them down quick,
smiling for a moment, red ice-lolly smiles,
and then we headed down to the church
to get the free sandwiches and soup,
and as we waited for the yellow door to open
and the woman in the long flowery dress
to come,
the junkies scouted around for pennies
amongst us,
the younger ones,
and we acted tough, or tried to,
and i said
i had nothing for them
until the dole cheque came, and hey,
that might be any day now,
and they kept talking until the yellow door
was opened
by the lady with the food,
and then Ray, one of the boys,
asked for an extra sandwich,
said he was collecting it for an old man
who lived in the hostel,
and everyone joined in and spoke of the truth
of Ray's statement
and urged her to forgo the rules just this once,
and he got an extra sandwich,
which he halved with one of the junkies,
and then we moved off
and someone pointed out a girl
who was large like a gorilla
and with similar movements,
and they said her name was "Fiddlesticks"
and i asked them why
and they told me she had been seen in the park
fiddling with her vagina
using a stick,
and that was the end of that conversation,
and after everyone had left the church
i tried to talk to 'fiddlesticks'
but she was crazier than i thought
and she moved off talking to herself
towards the train station,
and i decided to head to the park
to find Graham,
who,
one morning outside Burger King,
told me,
that he had been raped by his father,
who was a boxer,
and
Graham liked to feed the squirrels,
and he felt special when they came close to him,
that's what he said,
and he was expert at coaxing them near him,
and i went to the park to watch that
and i watched that,
how he coaxed the squirrels,
how they came near him
and ate from his hand,
and i felt sad and happy all at once
as it rained down on my back.