English Teeth.

We sat, the six of us, on two black, vinyl settees facing each other and waited in the waiting room to be interviewed for the orthodontic apprentice technician position. A clock ticked on a wall, a cheese plant slouched by a window, old magazines were splayed on a glass-topped table. The nearest publication had a … Continue reading English Teeth.

Fading Beehive.

Fading This is from when he was still a young boy; hip-slung, just so; nothing very much to say. Three lances of sunlight, emanating from beyond the top right-hand corner, fall forever across the photograph, piercing a number of the sitters - pupils and teachers. The headmaster (Mr. D) - front row, centre - has … Continue reading Fading Beehive.

A Pale Airman.

Perched on a bough in a black alder tree, trench rot soaking his booted feet, armpits and groin and tunic unkempt, teeming, a pale airman watched two strangers beneath. They were stood in shirt and tie, pinstripe beneath mackintosh and tucked into black rubber boots, ankle-deep in the river he knew to be the Quaggy, … Continue reading A Pale Airman.

Sumner Road.

  Scarce of traffic, vehicular or pedestrian, Sumner Road stretches east-west across the early evening dereliction that was once lined with kempt and pretty red bricked terraces and local businesses, but now is bordered only by bombed-out and mostly abandoned buildings resembling broken teeth. Some are so destroyed that the backyards, wild with nettles, can … Continue reading Sumner Road.

The Wronged Tree.

The back lane, this new-year dawn, is littered, bleakly - tumbled bins, spent bottles, knuckled tabs, sodden boxes; hound shites, plastic wraps, a quilted headboard, yellowed hand towel; wrapping-paper tumbleweeds troubling parked cars; a bloody gown of herring gull (gutting something); and the last, the very last, or the first, Christmas tree, skulking and skittling … Continue reading The Wronged Tree.