Ken Bolton

(1949 - / Sydney / Australia)

Hindley Street Today, With A View Of Michael Grimm - Poem by Ken Bolton

What to do

when the day’s heavy heart,

settled,

rises then —

thru some quality of the light —

& you your own mug

raise up

to see it,

register it

bing!

the way counter staff would

gain change

in the old days,

but not any more —

& not ‘today’, today

being now

(& in this ‘day & age’) —

Those old-time cash registers

having gone

before the electric typewriter, even, disappeared

— tho

I never

had one

of those.

Why,

pause, & reflect, & look down the street

where Michael Grimm might come

— & with any luck holding

in his hand

the tape you requested

& he was pleased to deliver

notionally.



Tho ‘notionally’

Notionally might well mean “Never”

Have you got it? Well

give it here!

Maybe he does.

On it several versions of Bauhaus:

“Bela

Lugosi’s

Dead”.

It’s too bright & clear

in Hindley Street —

for him to be about,

the Count.

Yet, the waitress says —

“Yeah, I frighten a lot of people,”

says jokingly

tho without much effort

as she clears the table

where I sit today

outside

to a patron whom she’d startled

— & actually, tho she’s

pretty enough

her makeup’s vaguely ‘Goth’.



I find her interesting

— as I look up today

& down the street

looking for it to confirm my intimation

& expanded heart

With a view of, say, seraphic Michael Grimm

& my tape

on which

Bela Lugosi’s dead

studio version & ‘live’.

He’s dead

& Dion

& so is Bing.

Bob Hope lives on, I think,

tho barely

but I’m alive

& Michael & Julie & Chris —

& those dead-heads from

the Arts Department

they’ve moved in

& now they find us ‘more alive’ —

we

laugh

at that,

‘good naturedly’,

the street is cleaner, too

since

they arrived

a reason why

the light strikes things better now

&, if this coffee haint improved

my mood has

as I think, Yep

— of Michael,

The Grimster —

will he have done it yet?

Too soon.

“Too Soon”

— the Nirvana story

it usually is

too soon, I guess

even Lugosi might have thought

One more day, a week!

I think, “not yet”

I’ve got

the ‘Hindley Street’ template out & operating again, the

details falling in

— ‘signed up’ for the long ride,

Tho less some days than others

but

just this minute I’m up for it.

The street looks grey & white

& muted

benign — or tired — or

more forgiving

Is that just the lack of traffic?

Temporary. And the lull between the late

breakfasters

& the early-lunch crowd, the time

given

the waitress to talk

the old men

at their tables, plotting

— plotting nothing —

the Tech teachers at elevenses, me,

& fucking

Michael Grimm



nut


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Poem Submitted: Monday, May 14, 2012



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