Another Man's Treasure
Fri, 15 Aug 2014
Below watercolour skies he sits content
on tatty, plastic sofa; a square peg in this
Overhead, a flock of seagulls shoot
the breeze. One by one, they land,
establish pecking order; feathers fly
before they dine on whatever
they can scavenge.
Under graffiti-daubed, grey arches –
his abode; an inside-out kind of home
with river frontage; an antique tilt-topped table,
a chance find from some burnt-out, stately mansion,
a clapped-out, iron framed mangle, circa
and a cello with no strings. Borough Market
just a stone’s throw away; pigs’ trotters, fish-heads,
his for the taking, when the stallholder chose
to turn a blind eye.
Under frosty, phosphorescent skies, needs must
he gets wrapped up in the news; The Telegraph,
The Independent, whatever he can find. Mind you,
a ‘Page Three Girl’ wouldn’t go amiss – not
on a freezing night like this.
A fingernail moon sails high above Tate Modern,
spawning images – transient, bizarre; shapes
and shadows fall on ochreous walls. Abandoned
bathtubs, sinks and stoves,
ever growing hoards of trash, throw a myriad
of patterns. Tin trays clatter-crash – vermin scatter
as the gaffer of the dump sets to work, sifting,
searching, discarding nothing.
One man’s waste is another man’s treasure.
Behind him, the flicker of a fire…a mountain
of detritus; a beacon of our time, burning bright,