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22 August 2013updated 28 Mar 2023 9:03am

“Leagrave”: a poem by Philip Coales

By Philip Coales

Sitting on a dormant train at Leagrave
I am at eye level with a sign asking if I’m
“IN DESPAIR?”. I guess I care.
My attitude to the Samaritans might be
“British ambivalence”, and, as
My attitude to a man without a First Class fare
Sleeping alone in the First Class booth,
Depends. This might be the “British culture clash”,
Of a begrudging sympathy – packed train, he’s tired, it’s fair –
If he can get away with it –
Vs. a jealous desire to see him dragged by the hair
And thrown onto the tracks, “IN DESPAIR”.

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