Rhythm is my religion

entry picture

 

Elbow deep in murky water

Dried egg stuck to his chin

Trevor the triffic kitchen porter

Plunges more plates with a grin

His daylight hours spent below ground

In the glare of fluorescent strips

He’s worth more at his age than minimum wage

He doesn’t even get tips

He scrapes leftovers from fine bone china

Of sturgeon and chateaubriand

Scours thermidore he couldn’t afford

From heavy stainless steel pans

He may be a slave to the suds and the grease

But he moves with athleticism

His hands maybe cuffed with blue rubber glove

But his shoes are soled with rhythm

 

He says:

“Rhythm is my religion

I breathe in 4/4 time

My heart beats like a temple drum

Just hear my church bells chime

When I’m on the dance floor

I’m in a state of grace

The rhythm wakes me and takes me

To another place.”

 

He peels the latex from his wrists

Shrugs off his uniform

It’s been a cruel and gruelling shift

But there’s plenty of dark before dawn.

He saunters sweetly down the street

Embraces passing friends

Smokes a reefer, pops a pill,

Hopes the night will never end

In the club he’s King of the dance floor

The Saviour of Northern soul

He leaps and spins to confess his sins

And loses himself in it all

He sweats out the grease and detergent

For his nightly reincarnation

Til he’s ready to sleep like a righteous man

And face the next day’s frustration.

 

He says:

“Rhythm is my religion

I’m walking like a dancer

Rhythm is my idiom

It’s got all the answers

I’m breathing bossa nova

It shakes my cares away

Rhythm is my religion…

Now let us pray.

 

◄ Hanging Loose

When I'm winding cleaners ►

Comments

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Val Cook

Fri 6th Nov 2009 10:53

This poem is good I like the energy and the way your words follow a beat.
"He leaps and spins to confess his sins
And loses himself in it all
He sweats out the grease and detergent
For his nightly reincarnation
Till he’s ready to sleep like a righteous man
And face the next day’s frustration."
Brilliant.

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Dave Bradley

Thu 5th Nov 2009 19:43

I enjoyed this Horace. I feel a real curiosity to know what will become of Trevor so must have been hooked. Did you have someone in mind when you wrote it?

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kealan coady

Thu 5th Nov 2009 12:05

this is a really great poem, the language, rythm, and especially the topic are all very enjoyable.

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Cynthia Buell Thomas

Thu 5th Nov 2009 10:53

This really is a good poem, full of energy in its subject matter and execution. The contrast of the necessity to earn money and the high of physical abandonment in rhythm is striking. The picture looks circa the 1950's.
You might like my poem Disco Dancing, the very first post on my blogs. Its format might have been too esoteric for most readers, but the joy of dancing is there.

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Francine

Wed 4th Nov 2009 19:37

Great poem Horace!
Flows nicely with the rhythm and rhyme : )

Can relate...

"When I’m on the dance floor
I’m in a state of grace
The rhythm wakes me and takes me
To another place.”

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Daniel Hooks

Tue 15th Sep 2009 21:23

I think this poem deserves a clap its inspired by the picture is it? writing poems using pictures as inspiration is a good exercise for any poet aspiring or otherwise I sometimes go back and try to illustrate my own poems with a pic or two

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