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Damant

1 Leave a comment on verse 1 0 It was a beautiful July day and there was the view before me!
Bayham Road, south Bristol, just by Perrett Park,
Fuchsia filled front gardens and all those hanging baskets
In all their petunia filled glory, in all those shadowed porches
Of good old Bristol’s 30’s ribbon development!
Look over there -there’s George Orwell coming up for air,
And there’s John Betjeman hiding from the flashing Odeon,
And look at the mothers looking for their childrens’ gas masks,
Over there by the swimming baths;
But like Laurie Lee, I walked out,
Not to Spain, but into Perrett Park’s
Good old south Bristol municipal socialism!
Park keepers still playing summer of love records,
“I read the news today, oh boy,
4,000 sheep are killed in Breconshire”
And lazily picking up the litter, emptying the bins,
And surreptitiously reading the picked-up porn
Behind the recent prunings in the gardens of Perett Park,
While I returned to the house for the daytrip to Weston,
A seaside pub cricket journey without a motorway sort of day,
Past sign posts to places like Chew Magna and Barrow Gurney.
We eventually parked in Charlton Street and sauntered along the prom,
Past the middle aged men walking 5 paces in front of their wives,
Through the northern holiday conversations about our local hero,
“I was just telling Viv, he played football against the Germans in 1915”,
Past the posters for Val Doonican, playing at the Winter Pavilion,
And up past the pier and over to the Edwardian toilets,
To find good those good old steadfast urinals from the Potteries,
“The Adamant”, made by Twyfords, Hanley,
None of your modern plastic rubbish.
Ah! The Adamant!
How many times hast thou come to my relief and aid!
How many times have I gazed upon thy lettering and logo,
Reflecting on thy poetic nameplate’s archaic meaning,
Whilst urinating into thy fag-filled bubbling deep,
“Adamant, a diamond or other hard substance, hence, unyielding”.
But something untoward then caught my eye,
I glanced 45 degrees to my left,
And saw how mankind’s time and tide had laid waste
To this urinal’s defences and orthography,
For there it was, no longer adamantine,
Instead, it read damant;
An aberrant initial A had disappeared into the ether.
What sort of omen is that, I thought,
As I studied the Western Daily Press’ STFC team photo;
What chance Danny Invincible?
Will the In be in and intact or out and no longer extant?
Will it be Invincible and Adamant?
Or Vincible and damant?
Forget the prosaic words of Danny Donegan,
The Swindon chairman –
“At this moment we have got what we’ve got
and we’ll see what we can do with that” –
Football fortunes are not told through such tautology,
It is only through poetic portents such as I have seen
That the truth of a season is revealed.
Will it be Invincible and Adamant?
Or Vincible and damant?

What can I say? The King has no clothes – just as I finished this the news came through of Andy King’s departure. I knew that urinary oracle was saying something.

Source: http://footballpoets.org/poems/damant/