Sunday, 9 October 2011

A Londoner In Worcester (Oct 7th 2011)

Last night I performed a set of poems at the Parole Parlour in Worcester. I was specially happy about my new poems going down well. That night I slept at the local Travelodge. 

My train back to London was at noon the next day. I checked out of my hotel at ten and went for a walk around town. The sky was red that morning. A red sky is meant to be a sign of rain but the sun stayed out. 

Walking past a medieval Cathedral and then a M&S supermarket, I noted the queue for the self service check out and then the free wifi sign outside the coffee shop next door. I wondered how I’d explain this to someone living seven hundred years ago. I pictured myself standing there holding an i-phone and showing it to a man in a black gown and an iron mask.

Outside London people talk to you in the street; this takes some getting used to. I was sitting on a bench and a woman with a face like a rotten carrot came up and sat beside me. Her arm was in a sling and she reeked of alcohol. The conversation went like this.

Her - Hello, you have great teeth.
Me - Oh’, thanks, was I smiling? I didn’t notice.
Her - What do you do?
I thought about this for a moment before answering the question.
Me - I’m a poet.
Her - A poet? How’d ya do that then?
Me - I write poems and travel places to perform them.
She looks at me blankly.
Me - Even I think it’s weird.
Her- Oh’. I never met a living poet before. Do all poets have teeth like that?
Me - I don’t know... some of them wear capes though.
She doesn’t laugh.
Her- How can I find out more about your poetry?
Me - The Internet... look up Raymond Antrobus.
Her – Don’t know nothing about the internet.
Me – I rarely meet a person who knows nothing about the internet. Well, unless I tell you a poem now you may never get to know.
I opened my notebook and read a poem I’m currently working on.
Afterwards she smiles and I notice she has about five teeth in her mouth. They look like yellow dices.
Her – I like the bit about not being able to stand on top of a mountain without feeling like a cloud is shitting on ya. I’m a bit like that. If I could sing or write poems I’d enjoy my own company a bit more. 
A man comes over with a face like a rotten potato. He reeked of alcohol.
Man – Careful mate, she fancies you.
Woman – oh’ shut up!
I check my watch.
Me – Alright, I’ve got to catch my train now.
I got to the station half an hour early and start writing this into my journal.
Disclaimer: All people in Worcester DO NOT look like rotten vegetables.
Upcoming Shows (last of the year before flying to South Africa)
October 11th : Royal Holloway Students Union w/ Simon Mole, Deanna Rodger, Tshaka Campbell, Anthony Anaxagorou, The Ruby Kid, Poeticat

October 14th : Rail Road Cafe' (Hackney) w/ Captain Of The Rant & Rachel Rose Reid
October 15th : Little Lamp (Brighton) w/ Richard Tyrone Jones

October 16th: Stratford Unitarian Church

 October 19th : Gallery Cafe' w/ Adam Kammerling & Anthony Anaxagorou

October 20th : Chill Pill @ The
 Albany w/ Dizraeli, Simon Mole, Deanna Rodger, Poetikat, Mr.T 

October 21st : Mixed Messages @ Mekan w/ El Crises

October 25th : Passing Clouds w/ Rafeef Ziadah 

October 23rd : Keats House Poets Present... (Keats House) w/ Bohdan Piasecki

October 27th: The Horse and Groom (Shoreditch) 
w/ The Ruby Kid plus Guests

October 28th : Open The Gate, Reel Rebel Radio w/ Inua Ellams, Malika Booker, AnthonyAnaxagorou etc
October 29th : Keats House w/ Benjamin Zephaniah, Patience Agbabi and Jordan Westcar


  1. I'm from Worcester and I hoped to make it to PP the other night to see you but life had other plans. Your conversation with the locals made me chuckle. I sat on a bench in Worcester bus station once and an old man sat by me and talked for fifteen minutes about the danger of herding pigs. He had a face like a lit candle though, he glowed with enthusiasm for pigs. Bless him.

  2. a face like a lit candle... lovely.