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Editor's Note




Three Poems

by Jim Bennett

The Room

underneath the blue green paper
pictures of flowers
is the ghost of wood-chip
and in places round the fireplace
in the wrong light
you can see
the papered over not-to-my-taste
dark blue paint
that someone thought
could be a feature

there are two settees
a TV, a video, a SKY digital box;
the channel chasing handsets
wait on a side table next to where I sit

There are a stack of video tapes
played or waiting to be played
books, magazines,
todays newspapers
and in one corner
the computer
that links me to a billion names
But even so
in spite of all this
the room is empty


the stone

stones have slow thoughts
a static that can take an age
between each spark
as they
slowly wear to sand

a boy picks up
a white stone
that reflects the sun
and he lets his finger follow
a dark line strata
inlaid a million years before
he takes it home
where it sits sixty years
as a memento
of a sunny day

the stone does not notice

playing dead

stay still as long as you can
lying on the floor helps
but even then
after a while
if you don’t breathe
your lungs hurt
and you have to take
in a gulp of air

try it in the dark
not just eyes closed
but really in the dark
no vision
not even after it has been dark
for ages
try it
you see flashing lights
you see colours
so it isn’t dark anymore
and in the dark there are dreams
and other pictures
and you move with them
even if it is just your eyes
behind welded lids

and you just can’t stay still
for ages and ages
because you just want to move
even if it is just a finger
and after a bit you want to stretch

but I knew that -
as only children know
- but only now
when I think of these things
do I understand
why all those years ago
I stood transfixed and watched
waiting for granny
to move

Liverpool-resident Jim Bennett has written 63 books, including ones for children, nine chapbooks, and books on transportation and examinations. He has won several awards, including 3DADAFest awards. He is also managing editor of www.poetrykit.org. He taught creative writing at the University of Liverpool and now tours throughout the year giving readings and performances of his work.

Copyright 2010, Jim Bennett. © This work is protected under the U.S. copyright laws. It may not be reproduced, reprinted, reused, or altered without the expressed written permission of the author.