Andrew Nightingale


Half six and I'm barefoot in the kitchen
waiting for the kettle. The steam is massing.
Through unbright eyes I focus thoughtlessly
until my dreams hush like an audience and I remember
the carnival has gone.

I'm making notes on a carnival that exists only as it leaves.

I can hear rain on a patch of dried grass.
I want to be in bed pretending to sleep
so I can lie awake secretly and listen
to the last shreds of night music. But it's morning now,
the carnival has gone.

That patch of dried grass could be the result of any number of phenomena.

I'm trained up like a monkey.
When the music stops the conditioned reflex
drops like a curtain. The wrong spell
blinds intention. The stage is empty,
the carnival gone.

There's really no point going on about it more.

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