Dropped off on Sunday afternoons
we’d brave doorsteps of fish paste,
wince at Rose’s lime, dream of Coke
and pizza, something then.
Afterwards cards in her front room,
ivy chintz clambering over chairs and walls,
windows veiled with net, the television
never on, except when time to lap up the worst.
Her decibels rising with her Embassy’s
blue smoke as looking far beyond
her dealt hand she would shriek.
Cheat! Cheat! Cheat!
after Michael Laskey
I feed it oily fish
rich in omega 3.
I stomach porridge
for its sake.
Virtuously I take a garlic pearl
with my green tea.
Red rare steaks now
replaced with Quorn,
of full fat.
What further supplement
does its diet need ?
Today a gypsy
sold me a sprig
of white heather,
I gave her silver,
Luck’s prices rising.
A version of “Inflation” was published in Krax in 2004.
Stephen Bone has been published in various journals in the UK and US, most recently in Ink, Sweat & Tears. His debut collection In The Cinema (2014), was published by Play Dead Press and can be purchased online here.