Listening To A Street’s Voicebox

Standing attention to the sound of first shouts
post dance floor, I listened with my stabiliser wings
clipped by taxi rank breath of engines, a howl
in the concrete cube alley outside Revolution
where a punch drunk fist blew echo holes
in the throat throat throat…
It turned the whole street into a procession
with blue light sirens and kebabs spilled,
neon vomit on the high heeled
‘Oh no,’ flamingos, pencilled into their skirts,
holding onto their fannies with their clutch bags,
squawking with tiptoes around the rugby kit mobs
oofing the championship brawl of the curb,
oof oof to each fist landed, the proper Reading lad
beating a Northerner for looking at him funny,
at least, that’s what he thinks he said,
in testimony as the law enforcing, luminous jackets pile
batons on his boxer brains, echoes his claims
that he’s not a racist, he just hates Northeners
and I recognise his bloody eyebrows from school
and his mouthy grit stained lips, spitting curses
and baseball bats at the officers, who monotone
their radio, cancelling backup, checking in the arrest,
test, test, they boom the mic, as a band starts in a bar
down the road, swooping the echo attention
of the crowd massing to a shout fight,
where a guys is almost killed for his accent
by someone I used to break juice boxes with
and watched him hiss at pupils, teachers,
without ever trying to stop him.

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