Tuesday, 19 October 2010


It's 1979. April. Maybe May.
Easter Holidays. Warm, but not drought-like.
Those days have gone.
The Commodores are lapping at our wings & The Isleys provide the breeze.
Musically we are sibling-servient
but the stylus tonight, belongs to us.

It's Saturday night, and everyone bar none is in our living-room.
I'm back from boarding-school.
I’m home
and I'm entertaining.
But no-one's really sure of who I am.
Except Simon
and possibly Janice.

I’m validated by my brother’s dog-eared record collection
and a pack of ten No.6.
Motown - Gold.
Philly - Best of.
Elton John.
Crocodile Rock. Badly scratched.
Bryant & May scorched fag-ends are greedily bum-sucked.
Windows open; my mum & dad will be back before we really knew they were gone.
Teenage squabbles reach their peak, in an orange draylon room.
There's juvenile lust for my parents' Dubbonet.
A gift from a now dead uncle.
Adolescent fumble juice, livened-up with flat Dandelion & Burdock.

I live on an out-of-town, new-town,not-quite-council
but nevertheless than aspirational, estate.
And all of my friends go to school locally.
I'm twelve years old. Nearly thirteen.
But in term time, I’m three counties away.

My parents have made their weekly pilgrimage to the Sergeant's Mess.
3 Para. Regimental.
And I'm in charge now.
This is all mine.
This is not a dormitory.
And I know the record will end shortly.
Lionel Richie's lamentation will end with a click and a whirr
The radiogram and other stuff we don't understand
silencing the screach of mopeds and us.

And she will stop dancing with me, she always does.
Whatever her name is.
We’ll all stop dancing, a bit confused and without each other.
Far from close, to anyone close to us.
And we will argue with each other over the choice of another LP, or 45.
And Simon will be sick.
And the evening will end with the smell of bleach upon my fingers.
And nicotine, and loss.
Easter 1979.
Warm, but not drought-like.
Those days have gone.

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