Jack Dempsey New York New York.

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Jack Dempsey’s NY 1980


Oh god. Oh Dear.

A hangover in New York New York.

Small recollections through

hazes of alcohol pulsed pain.

Shaking fingers fumbling 

for coffee and cigarette.

In a dark wood cased  cabin

from sweat stinking bunk.

A million other people

who jerked through the same dance.

Night before around the world.

I stepped in time with you.


On subways that fled past

as horizontal kaleidoscopes 

filled with germs and smoke,

And the lost waiting mindlessly

For a gap to mind.

With silent frightened dwellers

seen in a thousand unseen glimpses.

Speeding past every mugger 

and murderer in New York.

On the way to towers of shit

and drugs and petty insanity.

I’d smartened up for the task

Black suit, white shirt

Black tie silver tie clasp.

I looked like a

Reservoir dog.


“Noo Yoik and beef boigers”.

Broadway was

Waiting for me.

My goal that night.

Jack Dempsey’s bar full 

of punch drunk memories.

“Get the Limey a drink”. 

Broken old pugs living

to fight again in Jacks bar.

Walls washed in raging bulls,

floating butterflies and marvellous sugar.

“Hey man you wanna wild toiky”.

Unwanted but necessary,

Bourbon drinking competition.

Two US marines vomited their youth away.

They underestimated their challenge.

“You’d better clean that up motherfucker”.


Barmaid has peroxide hair

A tattooed tear 

And a way with words.

The competition never trained.

As I had, from sixteen.

Never growing up.

We had hard drinking trainers.

On Hessel Rd in “Raynors”.





◄ Clean dry socks, Falklands 1982.


Nicola Beckett

Tue 29th Sep 2020 21:15

I wish I was in New York again, as a woman travellinh alone around America 4 years ago I didn't go in any bars, I hit the streets instead sightseeing and the river and central park it was Christmas so it was magical, New York in the summer I'd like to try and with a friend I'd maybe try a bar or two bit it's sober ville for me being an ex drinker. I love this poem it's evocative and as if I'm standing in your shoes there. X well done you

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Paul Sayer

Tue 29th Sep 2020 15:28

I'd love a bite out of that Big Apple.

I'll have a Tab.

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