Super Man i

at the ticket barrier of Norwich station
a grown man, late-30s probably
tall, in his Superman blue outfit, red boots, red underpants, (no cape)
quite a catch
if you enjoy superhero cosplay
in the concourse of a mainline railway station
at 11:22h on Tuesday mornings,
he is The Man for you

such a superhero that he can't get past the ticket barrier
without a ticket
while she, (smart rain coat, tidy bobbed dyed-blonde hair)
presents her QR code to the scanner and steps neatly through

he raises a plaintive stage voice
'Thank you Nadia, I really needed that. Nice! That was really kind!'
as if he needed to attract further attention to his ridiculous self-centred fragile self

She half-turns, begins
"I've got..." trailing off towards Platform 3 head raised, looking to check her trolley case is coming too,
her unquestioning, loyal travelling companion

'Thank you for that Nadia!'
his stage voice rising as the distance between them grows
step by smart step
'That was really nice!'

no love in that, Superman, no fond farewell
how much Kryptonite has burnt into you?

she starts looking for a door
that will welcome her aboard
kiss shut behind her
she'll find a seat that faces forward
there's no way she will look back
at that terminal idiot

who stands hands on red-panted hips glaring across the closed barrier

"Excuse me, love. I need to get by"
a grandmother, returning to her over-55s retirement apartment in Great Yarmouth,
ducks her way beneath his blue-sleeved elbow
"You'll catch your death in that!"
She's a train to catch
and Superman has met his match.


CLP 19/10/2021

on the phone

there is something more
than just words, silences convey
our understanding


CLP 18/10/202

on autumn

here they come again
tumbling through overcast sky
air force jet fighters


CLP 18/10/2021

on water

I've walked out this far
each wave lifts me off my feet
dive in or retreat?


CLP 17/10/201


fungi in heart of oak
working to bring giant down
humbling royalty


n.b. We are all mortal.

CLP 16/10/201


light eases across bed
pulls back the winter duvet
solitude exposed


CLP 16/10/2021

on night

its cloak lays heavy
awake with longing for you
face of clock mocks me


CLP 16/10/2021

daylight robbery

this is ours
the canvas that fills with cumuli
where delicate cirrus decorates our moon
where Sun drags its heat from dawn to dusk
the venue of Venus, the field for Mars
where Saturn plays perpetual hula hoop
dance floor of Jupiter and its spinning jewels
backdrop for all our stars
this is our space you build in
concreting our view
damping our days
darkening our nights
boxing the light
constricting our breath
into narrow alleyways
you, who have enclosed our commons
now prepare to steal our sky


n.b. Time to draw a line to protect our light. Walls are being built on river banks and coasts for the few who are buying up our common views, breathing space and sense of space.

Norwich is being slowly smothered by these concrete and glass blocks. The Wensum is being enclosed.

Watching the building foundations being sunk is fascinating until you realise how deep the piles go and then the horror takes over; the sky is being taken from us.


CLP 15/10/2021

on stage

under spotlight's glare
all can see imperfections
of others' labours


CLP 14/10/2021

on autumn

steamed up windscreen attracts a playful finger
the smiley ghosts in and out of view
through October's low sunsets
and at each evening condensation
I know it was you
I recognise that smile


CLP 13/10/2021