Meeting the Bar: Lost connections

View from Brighton Pier to West Pier Skeleton and Brighton

From the walls
of the commercial heart we walk–

unconscious of dusk,
painting our faces shadowy and red,

unconscious of the lines,
forming around us and unconscious
of ourselves

We don’t remember where we started
and our aiming point’s escaped our view

as we walk independent
in the wake of others–

It is hot,

sweat runs in trickles from our forehead
and the organ’s silenced in our hand

We cross the night right-angled
and our bonds loose

still – if you’re a deliberate observer,
they are there–

and you will see
sitting on this bench on Brighton Pier,

silently observing,

the deck thick
with threads of lost connections
as i leave


This is the original text:

Dusk–of a summer night by Theodor Dreiser

And the tall walls of the commercial heart of an American city of
perhaps 400,000 inhabitants--such walls as in time may linger as a
mere fable.

And up the broad street, now comparatively hushed, a little band
of six,--a man of about fifty, short, stout, with bushy hair
protruding from under a round black felt hat, a most unimportant-
looking person, who carried a small portable organ such as is
customarily used by street preachers and singers.  And with him a
woman perhaps five years his junior, taller, not so broad, but
solid of frame and vigorous, very plain in face and dress, and yet
not homely, leading with one hand a small boy of seven and in the
other carrying a Bible and several hymn books.  With these three,
but walking independently behind, was a girl of fifteen, a boy of
twelve and another girl of nine, all following obediently, but not
too enthusiastically, in the wake of the others.

It was hot, yet with a sweet languor about it all.

Crossing at right angles the great thoroughfare on which they
walked, was a second canyon-like way, threaded by throngs and
vehicles and various lines of cars which clanged their bells and
made such progress as they might amid swiftly moving streams of
traffic.  Yet the little group seemed unconscious of anything save
a set purpose to make its way between the contending lines of
traffic and pedestrians which flowed by them.


At dVerse we’re running a Prose to Poetry challenge today – 3 pm EST. Means we take some text from a book and turn it step by step into poetry. The base for my above poem was taken from the opening of Theodor Dreiser’s American Tragedy. Oh and the pic is where i sat and wrote this…on Brighton Pier yesterday..


Brighton androgynous

West Pier Skeleton, Brighton

she is androgynous,
and suddenly i understand that word,
proud and pale she walks the lanes
like whorehouse owners– still

i feel her femininity, ache
to gain her trust and want to
lie with her under a feather blanket,
wondering if she‘s man enough
to fuck me– or

we’ll sit and drink,
strictly behaving unisex, hide
deep behind our poetry &
dressed in latex boots, suspenders and
pink plastic corsets,
spit the growing night unto us–

either way is fine

i observed her on the beach,
putting herself onto the waves,
next to the west pier skeleton
and back comes seasick fun fair shrieks,
carried by the wind and damp
with longing to move on–

this is why i‘m here,

lying in this tiny room
of a victorian mansion house,
drinking red wine off the bottle
and she’s slipped her hand
under my flower print pajama,

when i close my eyes, i hear the sea &

like a slut with broken legs,
she‘s woven gold strings in her hair–

and her lovers lick her empty


so this is how this city feels to me after my first day here in brighton..walked the beach for hours yesterday and tried to get to know her a bit…smiles..the “slut with broken legs” refers to the West Pier Skeleton (above pic)
linking up with dVerse OpenLinkNight, hosted today by a marvelous Natasha Head..gates will swing open 3pm EST