Poems to share

In The Angelfish Café

The woman who says sorry to chairs
is pleased with her work. She’s used her tray
to build a city within the city – the teapot
her Pavilion, forks for piers, a ketchup church.

I picture the cast of residents, fire eaters
who charm lushes in a park of crusted mash;
squatters occupying mugs; the spoon’s shadow
flecked with pensioners in latex shorts.

But the Creator’s moseyed off. I sip my lemon tea
and gaze as the waiter grabs the corners
of the ocean and the entire city trembles and rises,
floats away beyond the walls of the world.

© John McCullough, from Spacecraft (Penned In The Margins, £9.99)

With kind permission of the poet

John McCullough

John’s latest collection, Reckless Paper Birds (Penned in the Margins, 2019) was shortlisted for the 2020 Costa Awards. He was #BBCLocalPoet for National Poetry Day 2018 and teaches creative writing for the University of Brighton, Arvon Foundation and New Writing South. He is a Dr Who fan, and loves most things to do with Japan.