Fragments

Coursing across down up roads crossing taking lefts

Rights, centres, to the body; blows from city heats

Preliminary knockout rounds selecting who might what

Fill out our set shop-window: paucity today

Of finer decencies

 

I made a list this day on a short shopping trip

To buy

Some stocks of groceries, and whilst sat on wall

Waiting to be brought home again by motor car

By bagsfull lately saw

I jamborees of negligent events – I give one here

Do ponder:

 

See fleets of business vans gathered for use arrayed

Scattered about a busy street beside this busy store;

Parked up, packed up, and idle for the day,

No drivers, but

 

A phone went off so often and its answerphone

Kicked in so many times though hope was all but dead

For callers to that van obtaining anything unless

Some mobile minutes wasted

 

Entrepreneurs, the smaller sort, whose vans and businesses

Obstruct these roads; absorbing scarce road space

Without so much a wrinkle felt of offered:

Are much regarded, salts of the very earth

By city councillors and other weighty types:

Are needless of hard-standing to comport their fleets

Safe off the public way

 

Income, employment, oils for wheels of commerce; they

So highly stand in estimation on such wherewithal:

That gainful profits should be had; provide such rich congestion

And reason, law, and common duty look the other way

Seem worthy in such cause.

 

This latitude on right consideration

For others, for harrassed users of the busy store, and way

Provides a seedling germ for others’ clever-clever calls;

Smartarse smooth ‘work-arounds’

And many greasy money-seekers reach to take their cake

 

Who seize delightful chance to make a stealthy quiet march

On others, other ways to spike their neighbours nonetheless

By bending, by commending, they extend plasticity

Of good form, common rules, thus they enter the abyss:

Such stow a wedge in pockets, money proper spent elsewhere

Payrolling decency

 

Besides there are those fuel fumes astir from seams of traffic

Hampered by reams, battalions; oozing stupid chemicals

And add high temperatures of hectic stoked frustrations,

Plunged into local airs as roared through very vocal lungs

Vernaculars parse out pollutant mass abuse

Volatile outrage spouts from mouths inclement f-word strains,

Yet let the freebie fleets of vans be granted stolen space;

Count them

Among the public goods

 

Yes, let expense outright be spared defrayal overnight

No adequate appropriate and off-road garage lots

Have the locale’s good manners and good air not worth a turd:

Such value for the pound figures our warped commercial ways.

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