Sam stares up at the giant letters above him, lit in neon. XLR8. He looks at the scrote who took his money, leaning back with a girl on his lap as he chews gum and waits for a man of about 60, with mutton-chop sideburns and tired, mean eyes, to pull down the safety bar.
Tonight I sleep in shallow waves, like telephone wires alongside a motorway, never quite letting go. I briefly dream of Evie and then wake with a start as Norris starts hurling abuse at an arguing couple one aisle down.
OK, today, something very different. For my MA, I have to write a sonnet, a villanelle and a free-form poem. I haven’t written a poem since I was about 1986, until this morning. I’ve started with a Villanelle, which is a 19-line poem that has only two rhymes and some line repetition. It’s structure is a challenge, let’s say.
We watch children mourn their futile endeavour as the tide engulfs their sandcastles. Ellie lies with me as the water laps at our feet and we find his ghost in the clouds.