The Pantomime.

December 17, 2008 at 7:04 pm | Posted in poetry, writing | 10 Comments
Tags: , ,

Like a broken glass under a Punch and Judy stall
somewhere just south of the river he pops off
the red nose and throws it in the general direction
of the dog at the dressing room door.

Christmas has always been a terrible time for me
he mumbles into the mirror just listen to the sound
of the word Chrrstm’ss sharp and crystalline
like a cold dart through the palm of the hand
when the only parts available for bust down old drunks
worse than Ollie Reed, I tells ya, are Fagin stealer
of childhoods or Scrooge, one of his crew.

There’s a tiny box theatre down the road
he thinks untying his outsized shoes
where university drama students are doing
a modernist Passion play in which the sinner
faces god and says, in your omnipotence
could you not have found some easier redemption
than suffering? And when you say ‘my ways
are not yours’, do you realise that
not understanding why
only makes it worse.

The ending is predictable, I’ll never get the part,
as he shrugs on his overcoat, I’ll only make them
laugh.

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10 Comments »

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  1. There are many sides to this season aren’t there?

    I think that’s why I hate it, the misery of some gets elevated in bass-relief, if you like.

    I guess there is a kind of optimistic hopelessness in the last line.

  2. the Fagin stealer of childhoods, the word Chrrstm’ss, cold dart through the palm of the hand,
    this is so good i cant say anything except to repeat some of its brilliantsing

  3. optimistic hopelessness? Yea, Crushed said it, that is probably what came into my mind… maybe like business ethics, the phrase designed by some cunning comedian.

  4. …just listen to the sound
    of the word Chrrstm’ss sharp and crystalline
    like a cold dart through the palm of the hand

    You have “mad” imagery skills. I love it.

  5. But then if you have Noddy Holder screaming ‘It’s Christmas!’in his gravelly drunken grin, it sounds rather beautiful don’t you think? This is very melancholy. Clowns always seem so cussed to me. I hope he buys the dog a bone.

  6. In recent years I would have agreed with you in that Christmas is like a cold dart through the hand but, this year hasn’t been bad. I’ve actually enjoyed getting into the Christmas spirit. For many though I’m guessing it isn’t such a pleasant time of year. Well written. Have a nice day.

    Also, love your new blog look.

  7. I love that this breaks with the often too-sticky, too-warm versions of Christmas posted elsewhere, including on my own site.

  8. i am in pain therefore i exist… regardless of xmas or the turkey waiting to cool… in the heat of ice somewhere between lives a spirit who dreams of heaven here on earth just east of eden… so many images overflowing.. it’s the colored xmas lights glowing that makes it all worth wild…

  9. finally quiet enough around here to hear this piece and imagine it, let it sink in

    with the dart in the hand you get both the birth and the death of christ

    and the clown imagines both the audition and the failure in the same breath

    it’s been awhile since you’ve posted any new audio…i’d love to hear this one in your voice

  10. Thanks everybody. This one would be the last in the red nose series. To follow the adventures of the clown just put ‘red nose’ in the internal search engine.


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