These poems came about because I was introduced to the genius of Jackson C. Frank, so I spent half the night writing a cycle of nine hopefully bluesy love poems, while listening to him on loop.





dusty time of night

dusty time of night
between dusk
and not sleeping
in your arms,

lonely walks the street
he’s a blues song
looking for a home
rain-dirty love, all gone,

sunset slipped him a slow beer
steered him to a whisky-warm dive
bought him another round,
an empty bottle

is still full of memories.




fublin’ with midnight

dirty street-light-nights, new cross
a smokey pub
and last orders,

stumblin’ home
in arm bound love
kissing in the rain
tastes clearer,

midnight fublin’ trips us to the bed
instead of trying to move
just lie there, waiting for dawn
and for love, to never end.




1am ghost

i hear the late bars chucking out
drunken shouts and a police siren
i could not love this town more
if it were made of gold,

cat window scratches
i move slowly, not to wake her
a thankful purr to be rain-safe
and settles,

awake now
i set the sound to low
crackle-needle finds tom waits
in growling-soft saturday tones,

sit back and gently watch her,
breathe my hopes
like whisper-wishes
to the ghosts of night.




sunday morning blues

the words won’t come
on a sunday morning
never know what to say
the day after…

a bottle of jack
still sat on the table
the quiet morning,

she dresses quickly
says she has work
we kiss

silence is my blues
it follows my heart
in dark shadows
and unsaid words.




dirty streets

crisp-packet, gutter-blows
under a grey london sky
and the left-overs
of rain,

new cross train station
on a sunday morning
is a noisy whore
all naked and unashamed,

the clack of the carriages
as they carry me town-bound
sooth my mood
un-silence my smile,

window gazing,
south london
all dirty in its beauty
all dirty, in its love.




love song in echo

i see the lovers
walking hand in hand
the unslept streets,

i see the lovers
the undreamt years,

i see the lovers
it aches my soul.




the tender blues

it’s the gentle-soft
that wear away
the first,

love is in the detail
not loud gestures
noisy flowers
and sex,

the tender blues
painted our silence
into ordinary days

no one notices
where you are
or what song is playing,
until you get there.




last train home

tom waits
sings a jersey-girl lullabye
through tinny headphones,

train stops
ten minutes short of home
half hour delay
ain’t that always the way,

smiles at raindrops
down dirty windows,

knows he is happy
just here, just now,
and that
is a quiet sadness.



a new coat of paint

dust covers
placed with love
over the scratched old gramophone

colour-faded walls
of the old home

a paint-peeled kiss
lingers in the room

the rain-tears
echo louder
in the empty room,
some things can’t be fixed,

just painted



Filed under Poems 2011 - 2012, Poetry

6 responses to “THE JACKSON POEMS

  1. Tracy McPherson

    invoking pictures of foggy late night, bars closed, sitting at the bus stop playing days of wine and roses..thank you Si excellent

  2. siphilbrook

    Thanks so much Tracy, It did take half the night, but I loved doing them.

  3. siphilbrook

    Thanks Mary, I am very pleased you approve

  4. Anonymous

    Absolutely wonderful. I came and read these when you first posted them. Love In Echo might be my favorite, but the reality is, for me at least, this is one poem. You are at the top of your game here with your wordplay, keeping each image fresh within a topic that can be somewhat tired. This is wonderful work, Si.

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