The Paper Trails (For JC)
I imagine you, still, somewhere,
mind deep in newsprint.
A whole day we sometimes sat,
you and I,
reading the latest from the dailies,
swapping papers after lunch.
The odd comment every ten minutes,
though seldom printable,
and then you might have made me laugh,
saying at the end of it,
'There's nothing in the bloody papers, eh?'
Back in those days, I want to believe,
even the lowest local rag was a broadsheet sail,
that could carry you off on the breeze somewhere.
Classified study, minutes in their columns,
obituary of time itself.
Never a cross word between us;
that was saved for some folly
observed on the inner pages.
You were never taken in by any biased
hook they tried to land you with.
One of your friends, I remember,
was so enraged by the Pravda tactics
of the library,
pinning newspapers to the board each day,
but excising all the horses running at each meeting
that he pooled resources for a while
and brought, in boycott, a Racing Post
to your door each day.
So, no drama as you sat,
illuminated as greatly as in any cathedral's pew.
I see you and sat sometimes too.
No matter I can't see you now,
because I know that you are sitting yet,
ready for the greatest news.