City Encounter

It was just where the bus stop stands outside the library.

Noisy, crowded part of town

And he came along

Led by a dog.

He was blind.

He stopped near me,

Will you tell me when the number 30 comes along, he said.

Yes, of course, I said

But how can you be sure I won't be telling you for the number 43 instead?

I trust you, he said.

Was he really blind?

I wanted to wave my hand in front of his face like I saw in a movie

But that seemed terribly rude.

He put his dark glasses on,

He was really blind.

I petted his dog, a golden labrador type of dog,

So calm,

Kindness in the eyes.

The traffic roared by.

We talked and stood very close to one another,

I feel I can talk to you, he said.

After a while I could see the number 30 coming through a haze of mist, like an albatross,

Heading our way.

I felt like saying - stay.

Maybe I should follow him on to the bus,

Find out where he lives.

Will you help me on, he asked, not sure where the door is?

I thought he probably lives in one of those ground floor apartments

All leafy with trees outside,

Just him and the dog.

With one of those loud ticking clocks

That fill the place with a sort of comforting homeliness.

I thought the kitchen must be at the back,

Leading to the slightly overgrown garden,

So peaceful there.

The kitchen with the large scrubbed light wood table,

Standing on the fraying mat.

We could talk together there,

Talk about everything I want to talk about.

I could read to him,

Sit peacefully by the table,

Touching hands,

Like Jane Eyre and Mr Rochester

Before his sight returned.


I guided him up the steps into the bus,

The dog too.

Are you coming with us, he asked?

No, no, I said, I go in the opposite direction.


The bus doors swung closed

Leaving me standing on the pavement . . . alone.

🌷 (9)

◄ The Garden Shed

The Bound Bird ►


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Frances Macaulay Forde

Fri 5th Jan 2018 04:23

Another treasure.
I've so enjoyed catching up on your writing, Hannah.
Been away from WOL for a while, caught in life's net but reading all these poems has made me feel inspired again. Thank you.

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Tue 21st Nov 2017 12:02

Another lovely poem Hannah. I especially enjoy the way your imagination seems to work overtime, especially with your possible description of the man's apartment.
It's this kind of detail that brings the piece to life for me.

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Colin Hill

Wed 25th Oct 2017 19:19

I like the idea of the bus stop 'waiting' Hannah - but maybe that's an idea for another time and poem. Col.

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Hannah Collins

Wed 25th Oct 2017 17:10

Thank you David and Wardah so much.

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Hannah Collins

Wed 25th Oct 2017 17:07

Thank you for your comment Colin.
I too wondered if the bus stop stands there or maybe 'waits' there, like the passengers.
Formica top, a woman I work with when she wants to say 'touch wood', she often says 'touch Formica' and everyone laughs. But yellow does sound cool.
I do agree with you about that first line. Your comments are always helpful and welcomed. Thanks.


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Colin Hill

Tue 24th Oct 2017 09:05

lovely, thoughtful writing Hannah with different angles thrown in to make the reader think about the subject matter from, well, different angles.

I don't know why but I particularly liked the description of his imagined house although I had the table as being Formica topped but that's showing my age. Anyone know if Formica tables are still made? I suddenly have the urge to own one again. Bright yellow. I think a bright yellow Formica table would have been an interesting addition to the blind man's kitchen furniture.

I think your opening line could have more impact if shortened thus: 'It was where the bus stopped outside the library'. There is always debate about using the word 'just' in writing as many people see it as superfluous. Personally I'm easy but here I don't think it does add anything, likewise 'stands'. People stand at bus stops but do bus stops stand? Hope you don't mind me saying.


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Hannah Collins

Tue 24th Oct 2017 08:59

Thank you raypool for your comment, very much appreciated.

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Mon 23rd Oct 2017 22:40

So romantic in a gritty way Hannah. It feels completely real and unvarnished - a whole adventure of sensitivity compassion and curiosity rolled into one quite sad envelope.
Beautiful simple writing - keep on being yourself .


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Hannah Collins

Mon 23rd Oct 2017 20:05

Thank you Seeker so much.

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David Taylor-Jones

Mon 23rd Oct 2017 18:10

Beautiful Hannah

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Mon 23rd Oct 2017 18:06

That's beautiful...

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