JKT has long been a champion of the arts and is a fervent supporter of local talent, so it was a great pleasure to see her again and to have the opportunity to read and discuss poetry and writing in general.
During the show Jenny read brilliantly, sight unseen, my poem Cycle and I’ve since had a considerable amount of feedback about it.
The poem was written when my wife and I were living in a small Tuscan village a couple of years ago.
One morning I saw a young man riding a push-bike with a small child ensconced in a bucket-seat behind him.
It reminded me of the time I lived in Edinburgh and my own daughter was very young.
Then, I used to transport her around in a similar fashion.
Some things never change.
Everyone who’s been in touch agrees that Jenny’s delivery of the poem was superb and a number of you have expressed an interest in seeing it in print.
So here it is.
The living world sails by, complete:
strange images engulf her; sounds
pour into her; she is caressed
by air, safe in the old bike seat
behind her father, the firm mounds
of his buttocks against her chest.
A young child, perched like a nestling,
in the metal-framed basket-seat.
His firstborn. A small miracle,
the proud father thinks his offspring,
and to him, in the noisy street,
she clings, tight as a barnacle.
He pedals hard, pursued by time:
like roulette wheels, the bike-wheels whirl.
A breeze, around her soft hair, sings
with lyrical, unreasoned rhyme.
Euphoria engulfs the girl:
her arms reach out like stubby wings.