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Greyscale photos line the walls
Of grim-faced mums encased in shawls,
Moustachioed men in shirts and braces,
Kids in shorts with impish faces.
Big copper pans and hardback books
Catch dust in wooden-shelvéd nooks,
While tin-plate ads for Ready Rub
Adorn the pillars of the pub.
And polish – yeuch – pervades the air,
Hov’ring o’er each deep brown chair
And table, dull with weathered sheen.
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And plate glass smeared with Windolene
Proclaims the whiskey bonder’s name
And year he first struck out for fame.
A page from Griffith’s Valuation
Complements the Proclamation,
And yellowed cuttings tacked on wood
Immortalise the neighbourhood
With tales of prowess by young men
Who’ll never see this earth again.
Behind the bar, the brass clock chimes
For Dublin in the rare oul’ times.
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And up above, o’erseeing all,
The Mitsubishi ‘pon the wall
Blares out the commentator’s view
That Ipswich need a goal or two
To lift their fans and open up
Their quest for Coca Cola Cup.
And as he shouts in breathless tone,
His voice enchanted to a stone,
‘Bout stilted play and wayward passes,
Old men sit and lift their glasses,
And as they take a sup of stout,
They wonder what it’s all about.