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Day breaks, at a pace that makes the face ache and just for his faith’s sake, he tries to stay calm he looks down at his young man’s hands and at his arms and remembers a time when they seemed so much smaller outside it’s grey and as the rain beats a rhythm on the […]

December 1, 2008
4 min read

Day breaks,

at a pace that makes the face ache

and just for his faith’s sake, he tries to stay calm

he looks down at his young man’s hands and at his arms

and remembers a time when they seemed so much smaller

outside it’s grey and as the rain beats a rhythm on the window pane

inside feels just the same

he remembers the game he used to play

at home on his own

racing the rain drops to the edge of the glass

back then he only had to ask

any questions

was always someone inside who seemed to have the answers

in that house, that smelt of fresh pumpkin

fried dumpling, beans and Saturday cartoons

old tunes, Lee Perry and James Brown

when Soul II Soul came round he was rocking a fade,

Super Mario got played and played

like the hand-me-down jungle tapes

his brother gave him from raves

everything was simple and nice, Granddad’s advice

Nanna cookin’ peas and rice for ten children

cousins did the running man and whether it was sunny out and hot or not,

it never really mattered

first time he ever got battered by four kids

or on four quids’ worth of Tennent’s Super

shared with James Cooper

both times he got the same feeling

that all he wanted to be was back inside home

inside, nothing could hurt him, the fortress

Castle Greyskull with mom as the Sorceress

of course, things changed

people died, people left, people lied some turned strange

outside became home

two steps from fully grown,

running with a crew but in truth all alone

sitting in the park hitting spliffs and getting high

not really fitting in, but not really knowing why

different, only thing in common was boredom

keeping score of how many lips and trips they’d had

it went bad, the same old role play

picking up the dole pay and smoking to find home

inside and outside got blurred

so when he got hurt the only places to go

were the dark rooms

now he’s sitting in, going out less and less

smoking sess got in a mess internal voices

blames himself for bad choices and

with only himself to convince it’s a cinch to hear voices

no outside inside became both

one minute haven, next second a nightmare

the whole world is right there

one third of an inch of that same glass is now too much to ask

now it’s grey on both sides

and nothing tastes worse in this world than wasted time.

at this point the narrator steps up out of the paper and slaps his face to wake himself it’s now ten years later

days rolled like snow, avalanches of years

tears run off flushed cheeks and drown in his beers

it appears that things change and people move on

but if you just squint your eyes that perception is wrong

inside to outside it’s nobody’s choice

but what better way of getting out, than using my voice

from inside me to outside then inside you

from inside me to outside then inside you

You can hear (and see) some of Polarbear’s performance poetry at:

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