Green T shirt

Blue Nike nylon shorts

Shuffling trainers

Laces barely knotted moves along the street

The straw grey threads of hair spread out

From under the baseball cap

Sauntering and dragging

the arched hanging frame of a body

against the low set trolley

neck bent

head slightly stooped

against the staggered scowl that passes for a smile

indistinct in the backdrop

of human life buzzing

in frenzied too’ing and fro’ing

there’s no bodice body fitted tight and hugging curves

no six-pack facial hair

or definition of this forlorn

and scattered soul

the personification of life from Mars or maybe Venus

another stage of devolution

indifferent to all other forms of human existence

assumptions made

and assumptions found by day and by night

about what the eyes see

and the brain declares as intervention

sexless and without form

nothing for a single thought

to cling to

no port to dock in a storm

nothing to distinguish

any gender class or race

homeless or boarded with a cat

no one knows 

not easily categorised or attached

just another who seemingly doesn’t fit the mould

in this hierarchical preconceived

piece of little Earth

sectioned partitioned and labelled

by address, name and date of birth

married single, divorced or misplaced

assumed sexless because no known history

of relationship children or copulation exists

this person who is without age sex

and does not conform

to any known peg fitting hole

this person who is blank

of expression needs and demands nothing

except to eat sleep and dress

gives absolutely nothing away

◄ Identical twin

Golden days ►


Profile image

Martin Elder

Fri 31st Aug 2018 21:31

Thanks for liking Ferris

Hi Ray
your comments are always welcome. I guess we can never absolutely know what is in the hearts and minds of individuals which is probably a good thing sometimes but I like to see the edges of what has been seen to be acceptable in the past frayed at the edges at times. I currently work with people who have learning difficulties and or some physical impairment. They can seem different to others particularly if they are in a wheel chair and it is interesting to watch people out on the street and how they act towards the said people I support. now I am rambling and going off at a tangent.
Anyway once again thanks for your comments and thoughts , much appreciated.

I think I ought to get my coat

Cheers mate


Profile image


Thu 30th Aug 2018 23:22

HI Martin. Thanks for your response to my comment. I was intrigued by the internals of the poem, and I took off at a slight angle, but that I suppose all adds to the thought patterns as you imply. I meant that if a place lacks identity, it might encourage people to lose theirs. Although in the case of a transgender person, unless we know someone of that persuasion intimately, I think we can only judge on our instincts, not always unbiased i'm afraid. To be on the fringe of what might be acceptable is not usually easy i'm sure especially within families who have a vested interest in their children.

I'd better get my coat. Ray

Profile image

Martin Elder

Thu 30th Aug 2018 16:57

Thanks to David for liking and to Taylor , Jane, Sal and Ray thanks for your reading and appreciation.

Ray I am glad that you felt you could open this up. It is based on my observation of an individual from a little bit of distance so to be honest so I am not sure whether it was a man or a woman. I am guessing like you that it was a man I saw. But this piece was in part as a result of seeing this person and hearing an excellent poem recently about somebody who was transgender. This in turn got me thinking about identity and its importance not only to the person who wants to be identified in a particular way or not but also to us those others who view that person from the outside and the judgements we automatically make either rightly or wrongly. I am obliged too you because even now I am thinking again about my own responses.

Thanks again mate


Profile image


Wed 29th Aug 2018 15:11

Forgive me for opening this up Martin, but it is so admirable as it has no focal point other than this strange and yet recognizable man - the point is that I think today's faceless environments have grown into the material equivalents of people like this. There is a blind acceptance on a certain level of obscurity and lack of any means of incentive or escape. Perfect material for a cheapened lifestyle in fact - the antedote to the inspirations of Thatcher. The perfect storm in a cracked teacup in fact.

Great meandering poem.


Profile image

Taylor Crowshaw

Tue 28th Aug 2018 23:29

Wow Martin a great descriptive observational piece of poetry. Thank you ?

Big Sal

Tue 28th Aug 2018 19:52

You always know how to string words across a line in a vivid description of anything you're writing about. Well done Martin.?

<Deleted User> (19836)

Tue 28th Aug 2018 10:44

Wow! I really enjoyed this Martin. Your choice of words and descriptive usage really drew me a picture alongside a strong message . Great piece! ?Jane

If you wish to post a comment you must login.

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

Find out more Hide this message