Marc Woodward – three poems

Alexander Bluegrass

I paid a jerkined biker
for a pint of local beer,
and occupied a plastic seat,
with the open door quite near.
A cowpoke girl called Lisa,
an Alexander teacher,
showed me her technique
– tipped my head right back
and straightened up my feet-
as her friend Teri,
sitting watching me,
smiled and passed
small tips –
said I must
take some
..time
and
..feel
the
line
desce
..nding
down
from
head
.to
hips…

All around the banjos rang
fret and drum, wood and wire,
as outside the bikers
threw more softwood
pallets on the fire.
Twin fiddles scraped
an old Kentucky tune
while mandolins and gittars
joined the banjos in the room.
Later I swerved out to crash
the boot of a hatchback car
as the final fiddles
slurred down to
slumber
softly
under
neath
the fire’s
floating
stars.

Next day no fill of standing straight
could ease my cramped up spine
so I did bacon and strong coffee,
and forgot to think about “my line”.

A guy called Thor,
I’d never
met before,
sat with me
and sang softly:
country songs of
whisky paramours,
boxcars,
cheap bars,
coal mines,
good times.
I picked upon
my old red
Gibson
(she’s 93 this year)
as we journeyed
to sobriety
and played away
the beer.


Scattered

Just tumbleweed
in this world
of human seeds
forsaken and hurled,
she was deposited
with little grace
in an unwelcoming
council estate
……..never knowing why.

When she had
the temerity to cry
her mother just replied
“That’s the way it goes, Love.”

So she got a tattoo on her thigh:
Random is as Random does


Miss Lemon’s first class after the difficult episode

Good morning Class.
Today I want to discuss ‘Break’ with you all.
The verb of course – not the morning interval.
To break hearts, promises,

confidences, dreams,
words, vows, wrists, plates.
engagements, schemes…
What else can you break?

Yes David, you can
apply the brakes
– but that’s different,
though seldom a mistake
and often a very good idea.

You can make a break for it.
You can break down in tears.

You can break someone’s sleep
calling them at night on repeat.

You can break out in a sweat
(thinking of things you regret?)

You can break down a door,
break a window, break the law.

You can have a break down
You can be broken.
Down.
Broken
like an old dry stick,
into tiny splinters,
fragments you can’t remake…

Hold on please, I need a bit…

Class dismissed – take a break.


Marc Woodward is a musician and poet living (a term applied loosely) in sleepy Devon.
Unsure whether he’s destined for Heaven or Trago Mills when he dies he’s aiming for Purgatory where he hopes to finally get a chance to watch the whole series of Game of Thrones (which his son insists is good) and possibly finish Moby Dick. Apparently they all die in the end. So how come Ishmael’s telling the story? Huh?

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