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In the library


There is the stale air
As if each visitor
Deposits carbon oxides
In return for oxygen

Rows of neat platoons
Lie like stranglers
Inching out to each
Set of sensing fingertips

It is as quiet as
Bored concrete. Soft
The soporific strip-lights
Sink the dough-heads

An occasional kick
Hits a nervous cough
In some unloved corner
Where radiators die

The grey raincoated man
Forgotten by his wife
Tips the scales of sleep
And newsprints his brow

The librarian, eager as a hawk
Perches on the counter
By the door. No-one
Escapes her light-swallow

There's an unpunished voice
Somewhere behind "Local"
Someone whispers "Life"
The hawk swoops for lunch


© David Incoll 2001


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Copyright by David Incoll 2001