Somewhere - Don Walls 2009

"LIKE his head, Don Walls' shed must be full to overflowing.  He keeps both his imagination and his bad language in there, but inevitably they escape the wooden confines to express themselves to startling effect.  He is both a fantasist and a realist, freeing himself from convention on flights of fancy and yet tied inexorably to the past too, his memories so evocative in his twists and turns of phrase.  Age weathers him rather than withers him, and if the modern world endlessly frustrates him, it is still a better place for his wit, his alternative animal kingdom and his shed." Charles Hutchinson, The Press arts critic, York.

ISBN 978-0-9546937-8-7 C. Don Walls 2009 Cover Illustration Don Walls DEADGOOD Publications England.

Ted the Window Cleaner

Biggest fibber this side of the Ouse
Cleaner of royal window, he claimed
- once at the palace it started to rain
when the late king raised a window and said,
'Ted, tha'll catch thee death o' cold
come in until it stops
and have a cup of tea.'

Purveyor of knowledge
 - Ted know our land from end to end
downfall pipes and rotten gutters
the Johnson's Duckett, the Smith's lovely lav
why Linda Lane had gone away, stayed with grandma in farthest Kent
and on his rounds he always found what was lost
Tom Smart's marbles, my conker 94 years old,
the Spivey's cat.

He knocked at doors for water, talk -
drawn out, long, like the slow goods train on the Scarborough line;
three windows in an afternoon, not more,
he knew no time,
'til evening sent him home for lack of light,
then humping his ladder down the lane
met Mrs White fetching clips for tomorrow's rugs.
Oh then he'd talk the moon around
while his missus kept warm his fish and chips.

Late November, 1948 Ted fell from his ladder and broke his neck.
The neighbours dropped in to pay respects,
Ted laid out in the dim front room.
They all came out
awed at the silence that surrounded him.

Beast of a Meeting

It lumbers in
has an agenda to keep it on track,
likes to be stroked,
its minutes read back,
feels its way forward dragging its feet
flops with fatigue,
covered in cliches
like burrs in the grass
grunts, repeats
eats acres of verbiage to nourish itself.
And then, it craps.

Thought Watching

My head is a marvellous place
for watching thoughts.
They appear at any time
just strolling along or walking the dog.

With each other, some wrestle for days
 - I have a ring side seat.
Others like birds skitter on snow,
their tracks soon covered
and some of them drive me from my head or fetch me a poem

 - and all the thoughts that keep me alive:
the tilt of the moors
and frost in the heather Kilburn to Wass,
your sense of direction
and both of us lost.
Don Walls, poet in York, resident poet of the Black Swan Folk Club, published poetry books, buy from Amazone, In the Shed, Down the Lane, Inside Out, Somewhere, Where Are We Now?