Roddy Williams – The Atheist Poet

People Who Look Like You (2016)

One on the Piccadilly line
stroking his i-phone like a pet.
Cool on speed dial.

One outside the San Marino
too tight pants
shoes with dagger toes
(yeah, that’s what I thought)
arguing in Italian
above the coffee’s rage of froth.

there’s the one in Waitrose
who smiled at me
while sorting olives.

I smiled back.

He went away to stack
some crayfish tails
in tidy piles
with rhythmic calm.

I was left
with thoughts of you
the real one.
They are good thoughts
to be left with
in a Waitrose aisle

looking vacant
holding brittle hopecakes
generously beaming out
an international smile.


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