Wednesday, 7 September 2011

California Bound


thinks he’ll get up
in about half an hour or so
— the alarm bell rings

turning the taxi around
to go back for her front teeth

sparking an alert
camera left in pocket
by first-time flyer

moved to an earlier flight
due to fog in Amsterdam

sun shines on snow-scape
we are flying
above the clouds

spreading wobbly marmalade
at 29,000 feet

Schiphol Airport
miles and miles of walkways
between the gates

frisked by a security man
for the second time today

hot hand towels
crossing over Scotland
heading towards Iceland

over the top of Greenland
filling in a green form

the whole way across
the Atlantic — still
only halfway there

high above Manitoba
his feet have fallen asleep

inflight movie?
videotape is corrupt
millennium bug?

homebound Emily age four
cheers us with her chattering

after the last meal
long queues
for the toilets

unaccustomed to the heat
we sweat in the Customs Hall

catching a "shuttle"
it encircles the airport
for twenty minutes

afternoon rush-hour freeway
back home it is past bedtime

© Gerald England

Composed: Manchester - Los Angeles, 10th November 1999


2002 WEBBED SKYLIGHT OF TALL OAKS (York, Fighting Cock Press)
2004 The Same (USA)

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