Author Topic: Three Tube Poems  (Read 2026 times)

Offline Dylan di Vilde

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Three Tube Poems
« on: November 28, 2013, 04:40:36 AM »
Three poems about stuff that happened on the tube. These originally started off as one poem but it grew and grew like an untreated tapeworm ‘til I chopped it up.

The Down Escalator

An unpleasantly warm waft of air,
from an underworld passage somewhere 
pumps through the underground stations
with the jumbled up germs of all nations
and a swathe of unsavoury articles
such as… dermatological particles.
It surges to meet you in greeting,
with an eagerness thankfully fleeting. 

You just have to go with the flow,
wherever the currents may blow,
carried along by the swift-running tide
you can’t be a dawdler, here for the ride.
Here they march to a speedier pace
a look of  impatient resolve on their face
and no individual action or word
can challenge the overpowering herd.

Another potent balmy gust
circulates the network’s dust
as people strain
to board the train,
a final push
to join the crush.
The doors securely close behind
the meaty press of humankind,
united in the daily slog
but gravely close to dog eat dog.

Sweepings from the Factory Floor - New volume of poems available now at –
https://www.feedaread.com/profiles/10661/

Offline Dylan di Vilde

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Re: Three Tube Poems
« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2013, 04:42:14 AM »
so I thought – hello, there’s a subject for a poem if I ever saw one.


Chaplin on the Northern line

Another stressful morning rush,
the smartly suited heave and push
off to harvest fiscal fruits
in slick financial institutes
a hard-nosed breed with names to make,  
deals to close and risks to take
and all pretend they’re unaware
of Charlie Chaplin sitting there.

He brandishes his hat and cane
his bold illusion to maintain
Ignoring plain reality
for self declared normality,
sustaining his charade
with dignified façade.

He’s off to teeming tourist traps
to pose and mug for I-phone snaps
and after many hours of that
returning with a heavy hat.

But is he also swept along
submissive to the milling throng?
Or does he fight against the flow
to undermine the status quo,
looking out for hay to make
whilst trailing chaos in his wake
to triumph with balletic pranks
for doe-eyed ladies’ heartfelt thanks?
A hero of the smaller fry,
the universal little guy.

He disembarks and joins the surge
where shifting channels swiftly merge
and where the swelling river flows
a single bobbing bowler goes.

Bodies nimbly weave and pass,
nipping through the seething mass,
joining in the daily bind,
a bedlam of the ordered kind
as on he’s driven, tightly pressed
and swallowed same as all the rest.


« Last Edit: November 28, 2013, 08:53:29 AM by Dylan di Vilde »
Sweepings from the Factory Floor - New volume of poems available now at –
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Offline Dylan di Vilde

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Re: Three Tube Poems
« Reply #2 on: November 28, 2013, 04:42:56 AM »
A Long Day

A hollow-cheeked, crimson-eyed fella
slumps wearily clutching his Stella
the pace of his living is slow   
he clearly has nowhere to go.
And he’s getting a little more space
than normally would be the case
his sorry condition is plain
and it’s late on the Underground train

A young girl to his right
embarrassed but polite
fields his drunken questions
and travel plan suggestions
but passengers grow restive
as suggestions get suggestive.

As the carriage slows
the girl gets up and goes,
he slowly starts to rise
fixation in his eyes.

I subtly block his way,
the dog won’t have his day
and seeing what I do
a lady there does too.
We’re discreet
but our eyes meet.

He mutters ‘scuse me mate   
but I make him wait
cos it’s late 
and he’s in a right effing state.


The girl has gone
the train moves on,
the thwarted lump
resumes his slump.


Now if I get off at the same stop as the lady
will I then look a bit shady?
Sweepings from the Factory Floor - New volume of poems available now at –
https://www.feedaread.com/profiles/10661/

Offline shadowdrifter

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Re: Three Tube Poems
« Reply #3 on: December 05, 2013, 01:22:19 AM »
Hi

Living in London I'm very familiar with the tube and the "delights" of rush-hour crush.  In the first poem you did omit to mention the rats that scurry between the rails. 

I do like your use of rhyme but thought the line length of the last verse worked best to give the feel of the frenetic pace of trains and commuters.  It would be good if you could match all the line lengths to that one.  I liked especially:

Quote
Another potent balmy gust
circulates the network’s dust

In the second poem, an interesting image of Charlie Chaplin on the Northern Line and again, som great rhymes. Favourite in this one was:

Quote
off to harvest fiscal fruits
in slick financial institutes

In the third, I could relate to seeing the down and out sitting there with his can of beer and all the seats around him vacant because no one wants to sit anywhere near.

I think you could cut out the last two lines, they don't really add to the poem.

Offline Marie Meyers

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Re: Three Tube Poems
« Reply #4 on: December 22, 2013, 03:41:01 PM »
These were really good!!!! I liked them. I found the last line in the third poem humorous. (: This was a read, I imagined each scenario. I've never been to London, but now I kind of want to go.
💋✌🎶

Rocko Polo

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Re: Three Tube Poems
« Reply #5 on: January 17, 2014, 02:03:20 PM »
Reminds me of my daily trips to work and back some decades ago in the New York City Subway.
I don't know how it is in the London Tubes, but during rush hours, we New Yorkers were often packed in like veritable canned sardines.


Enjoyed the read.
Thanks for sharing.

Rocko Polo

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Re: Three Tube Poems
« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2014, 02:10:13 PM »
Three poems about stuff that happened on the tube. These originally started off as one poem but it grew and grew like an untreated tapeworm ‘til I chopped it up.

The Down Escalator

An unpleasantly warm waft of air,
from an underworld passage somewhere 
pumps through the underground stations
with the jumbled up germs of all nations
and a swathe of unsavoury articles
such as… dermatological particles.
It surges to meet you in greeting,
with an eagerness thankfully fleeting. 

You just have to go with the flow,
wherever the currents may blow,
carried along by the swift-running tide
you can’t be a dawdler, here for the ride.
Here they march to a speedier pace
a look of  impatient resolve on their face
and no individual action or word
can challenge the overpowering herd.

Another potent balmy gust
circulates the network’s dust
as people strain
to board the train,
a final push
to join the crush.
The doors securely close behind
the meaty press of humankind,
united in the daily slog
but gravely close to dog eat dog.


Well,  I guess that last stanza answers the question, they do pack them in like canned sardines in London as well.

Offline bri h

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Re: Three Tube Poems
« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2014, 06:03:04 PM »
Three brilliant passages of time. Superbly written Dylan, as ever. Bri.
Fare thee well Skip. We're all 'Keening' now. xbx