flicker

A hot summer’s day in London, travel from the Court back to the coach station, exhausted. Looking for peace, I can’t find it. The density in the air seems to shut me out – or do I really sense oppressiveness in the midst of the high-rise glass towers as I am waiting for the bus?

Finally, I find the gate for my coach and sink into a chair, still feeliing numb. There, my eye is caught by a black man with a hi-vis jacket brushing cob webs from the walls. He shares  a laugh with a female colleague. His tool looks to me like a giant feather duster.  Suddenly my heart lightens, widens – and there is peace. In the cracks and corners this man wipes, in his face – and my heart. I breathe deeply. A short while later I pass him on my way to the toilet and I ask him what his tool is called and he tells me: It’s a flicker. I tell him I am going to write a poem about him. He beams, and perfectly good-natured offers me another line:  When you turn it round it’s a cane. He waves it in the air with mock  authority. I say I won’t write about that and am on my way.

a black sun shines –

no cob webs left

in my heart.

 

 

*I believe the term ‘black sun’ is borrowed from James Baldwin

 

 

 

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~ by Barbara S on August 22, 2016.

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