Peter Chapman Poetry

cheap rum

you are climbing the bridge like a pro,
tools bumping, no thought but the job at hand

(when i see you edgewise) driving over the sunshine
strobing through the span, like that day in the Healey
on the way to Bristol, with the poplars
eating up the country at 70, four inches of British steel
and air between my butt and the blur black road

and from the bridge in the brittle light
to the horizon and below, amazing!
the curving frozen edge of the shoal
like a scalloped rink meets the inky bay,
showing the soundings
fish float over, refracting off the brilliant day
through girders and the sun's blind song, into me
with a bit of rum, passed to us all for a job well done

so i have the day on the other side
and coming back over, in my sweet rum glide
i feel a stronger bridge than i drove before
hammered and scraped to a shiny braise
and i thank you aloud, for your good renewel,
and think further to rhyme (with praise or jewel)
the span-crossing ode this poem's become

but demur, and get home in the reddening sun,
the shadows long, endearing the day
with little to do, just this to say