The queue for the poetry book signing.

“Is this the queue for the poetry book signing?”

“What do you think?” came the obligatory rhetorical question that the Raynor Winn fan gave as an answer.

I moved my gaze around the bookshop.

Ah, there, in the far corner, a lonesome figure surrounded by hordes of illusionary readers clamouring for a signature, a dedication, a spare copy, and a life each. Poetry was not the draw that it had been in the time of Chaucer, or even Shelley.

I moved towards the lonely outpost, determined to bring at least a moment’s happiness to a poor,lost soul.

“Is this the queue for the poetry book signing?” I asked him.

“What do you think?” he replied, a dazed look haunting his poetical eyes. “The queue was long, but it did shrink. Now, it is no more, a faint remembrance of the queue before.”

“I see it is. I said “My senses and knowledge aligning, I find my place, in this papery place – are you up fir a signing?”

The poet looked up at me from his position of sanctuary. “Ytho! Ty a wor redya Kernewek?”

“A little.” I replied lamely. “Dydh da.”

“Careful, sunshine, you’ll cause yourself an injury, take it easy, life is breezy, if you care to toe the line.” the poet threw off rhymes like a sparrow in a sandbath.

My estimation of the poet was being revised by the moment, he was now just a lowly wordsmith barely conjuring similes in the face of proper literary conjunctions.

He signed ‘To Greg. in a copy of his book, even though that wasn’t my name.

I left, and immediately visited the charity shop next door.

“Thank you, sir; that will help fill up our ‘reduced to go’ bin.

“You’re welcome. Have you got any Agatha Christies in?”

They had. My day would not be a complete loss.


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