After the rain the sun
after the sun the North Circular's joust
low silhouettes of abrupt streets
then sunset of Essex
no brochure could contrive.
In the marquee the tableware set
reams of cutlery arranged
flattering on white
napkins rising majestically
small flower sprays,
a legion of glasses
and profoundly grinning the melon segments
with their tears of joy.
Gold painted chairs with bows and skirts
tiny cards for the special day
Mr and Mrs Silverstein
next to Nanny and the children
poised resplendent the toastmaster
gavel in hand.
With five minutes to go, fever taut
the drummer arrived
perilous in his frantic rush
with a flash of black a drumcase crash
top table collapsing Poseidon adventure
in the fray too late for tempers
a host of caterers saved the day.
Never trust a late musician
always the proudest
always the loudest
and, after the gig, the first away.