Wednesday, September 14, 2011

The Blue Train


asks the question
'Have you ever travelled by train?'


A million years ago
I travelled on the Blue Train.
Fresh from London,
I had arrived in the sparkle of South Africa.
Rhodesia, as it then was,
We went to the station immediately;
I have forgotten it.
We boarded the train
And sped North;
I have forgotten most of it.
After all
Fifty years is a long time.
But I remember the border.
Because the staff changed
From South African
To Rhodesian.
Who could forget the
Dazzling white uniforms,
The dazzling white teeth,
The smiling generosity of spirit,
The good humour,
The efficiency?
I knew Rhodesia would be heaven.
And I was right.
But that was then.


Cardiff! That's disgraceful! What a mess of paint!
It's enough to try the very patience of a saint.
To think that you'd allow your docks to be so desecrated!
Your authorities will find themselves thoroughly berated!
It's nothing but graffiti! It's a positive disgrace!
How can all those Welshmen stand to contemplate the place!
I'll walk around and look at all the smears and all the mess!
Though I'm sure that it will bring me the reverse of happiness.
But what is this? I've reached a point where every splash combines!
Where all the bits and pieces form concentric curving lines!
Where I can see three circles of ever-decreasing sizes!
Surely this must be the very greatest of surprises.
Only the spot I stand on affords this vantage-point!
In all other positions it's a mess and out of joint!
Perspective-changing art! A name I've never heard before!
But now I want to see some more...and more.... and more.... and more!
Cardiff! You were cleverer than I was at the start.
For you commissioned this entrancing form of modern art!


for a great prize.

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