lunchtime mediocrity

i am staring into an abyss
that is this ham sandwich.
this irrevocable descent into
lunchtime mediocrity
and workplace anonymity.

Dizzy Gillespie bebops in my ears
Dee Gee Days, Lady be good as
little people jostle and bustle,
eating little people meals,
lunchtime meal deals. sad life meals.

and i am at one with this chair.
at peace with this table.
metamorphosed into a casual diner,
a suit in a sea of polyester hoodies,
a man with a ham sandwich.

and if i squint, the world becomes
black and white. a world of contrast.
of day and night.colourless, insipid and dull.
my table is a mess of light brown crumbs.
my brain is a mess of fudgy thoughts.

a mother sets her screaming brat
into a kiddy ride that blasts
electronic noise. aural pollution.
an affront to my middle aged senses.
i mutter like a grumpy old man.

i’ve picked the ham from baguette.
extracted protein from carb,
millions are starving and i offer
bread to the lunchtime bin. perhaps
i should fatten up instead of staying thin?

coffee keeps me keen. sharpens my angst.
a sip to open my brain, to open my mind.
i have finished my repast at last,
thrown my net over this lunchtime treat
said my peace, acquiesced to convention.

i will return tomorrow.
same time, same seat, same table.

same sandwich.

the early morning train to El Paso

on the early morning train again
with funky Ben and sleepy Germaine
squinting in the morning sun as we
hurtle past Luton on the London run

a man called Stan
(who has a poodle called Charlie)
is discussing the virtues,
or otherwise, of super noodles and
other things edible and synthetic
with a chap called Norris who looks
like a small hairy rhinoceros.
their conversation is quite pathetic.
the track rushes by. i imagine
their tangled bodies crushed
beneath this early morning train
never to reach Paddington alive,

but what of the consequences?
the aftermath. the legacy.
i could run from the cops, the fuzz,
the filth, the old bill. buy a ranch
in El Paso, raise conifers and corn.  drop Peyote,
howl with the coyotes….

the train stops.

a line of liquorice allsorted commuters
jostle and bustle and rush and curse…

a conductor points to something clinging
to the steel wheels. it looks like a body….