not enough

we sat in the cold

having nowhere to go

listening on the radio

or if we had money

for batteries

a tape recorder

playing Alice

Led Zep the Floyd

& Jethro Tull

because we knew

how it feels

to be thick as a brick

shut out of the parties

unwelcome at home

our feet worn at the heel

wanting something

anything to come take us away

this cold pretence of real

& now he has forgotten

all of those days

telling stories of love happiness

no days of worn coats

nothing to do

but sitting on benches

with nowhere to go do

& whatever we had

was not enough

to last in his feels

the sickness

when the sickness takes hold

bites to the bone

there was nothing I would not do

to keep you close

nights wondering where you were

but knowing deep down

& it don’t help to know

right now I was the clown

I’d sworn never to be

seeing others torn into two

wanting to keep on this half life

half love forever chained

to somebody who doesn’t love you

in the way they swore to be

& it don’t help to know

you know how this will end

being foolish is little different

from being the fool

who doesn’t know what is coming

tomorrow the next bend

this sickness will drive you to

no warmth

Larkin

had it just about right

my mother would flit in

out of my life

appear & disappear

leaving me standing

watching her back

vanish into the crowd

tell me she loved me

then be gone

my only evidence of her

for many years

were the holes

made by her high heels

into a fresh asphalt path

I’d see these every day

on my way to school

wondering if & when

I might see her again

leaving nothing

no warmth

nothing at all

but emptiness

owes me nothing

took her from the street

not a rescue cat

more a dog afraid

of being beat

& we loved each other

for a little while

left me standing then

her time had moved on

her drum sounding

to another time another guy

left me on my own two feet

& if I was grateful

for anything

she had shown love at all

when I thought that

had gone another way

she owes me nothing

though back then

I felt she owed me more

just two strays

walking down the street

together for a little while

that’s all

coming round

we’d tried for a while

& I liked her some

but felt no spark

no lift of wings

but she kept coming round

would dust the place

move stuff around

& for a motherless boy

there is comfort there

never gave her a key

just a soft tap at the door

& she’d be here again

offering foods she’d bring

& every now & then

she’d bend in such a way

those legs’d catch my eye

a man is all he is in lust

I promised gave her nothing

for that soft tap at the door

& if there was someone else here

she’d go away without a word

come round again on another day

until I felt I owed her something

or was it just the pains of guilt

of taking & not giving

& when the landlord put the rent up

I moved

& never saw her

anymore