Terry Collett

Gold Star - 23,054 Points (13/12/1947 / LONDON)

Prettier Than Helen. - Poem by Terry Collett

Janice you thought
prettier than Helen
more refined

whose voice
was softly spoken
as if her words

had been fresh baked
in an oven
in her mouth

and her hair fair
and well groomed
but Helen had

that down to earthiness
that brought her
closer to you

and something about
her thin framed
thick lens glasses

made her seem
more lovable
to your boyish world

and she stared at you
through them
and smiled

that shy smile
and said things
with a rough edge

as if she'd bounced
the words around
before she uttered them aloud

you can come to tea
and we'll have bread and jam
and a big mug of tea

or if mum's remembered
lemonade
she said at playtime

in the playground
out of hear shot
of the other boys

who kicked ball
or who swapped cards
or threw marbles

along the ground
or fought battles
with imaginary swords

or shot pretend bullets
from rat-a-tat guns
and she said

to entice you more
you can see my new doll
my dad brought back

from the store
ok
you said

sure
and she smiled
and her nose creased up

and her glasses moved
and some small place
in your chest thumped

like furniture being dropped
or a bed being bounced
in some small hotel

and you watched her
go off to play skip rope
that thin framed

thick lens glasses
working-class
school girl.


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Poem Submitted: Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Poem Edited: Tuesday, April 10, 2012


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