There was poetry in pobs.
Simple meal my mother made
when I was ill or when
there was no porridge or Cornflakes
in the larder.
A few slices of bread, cut into chunks,
sprinkled with sugar, boiled in milk
in a pan, heated to hot but not to boil,
then poured in a bowl,
to be eaten with a spoon,
the blobs of pobs sweet, swollen, tender.
It is now my belief, not good for the teeth,
but good for stomach and tongue.
Never could taste now as good as they did
when I was young.
As paradise as a Pendleton’s ice cream on a stick
on a summer’s day in Southport seashore town.
There was poetry in pobs,
partly because I did not have them often,
and they did not pour from a box,
bought at the shops, but were home made.
They were forgotten until eaten again.
They were rare, a treat.
Perhaps people ate pobs in England in the war,
when there was nothing else to eat,
I am not really sure.
And there was poetry in cabbage white
and red admiral butterflies,
flitting about in the back garden,
we tried to catch in jam jars,
and nets on the end of yellow canes,
when the sun bid us all to play,
and in the curling of caterpillars
under rhubarb leaves,
even blue bottles butting against the kitchen window pane,
knowing it was all right for insects feel no pain.
There was poetry in rainbow rings,
really smears of oil, leaked from the engines
of motor vehicles, lying in puddles by a pub car park.
Come to think of it, there was poetry in many things,
and there still is.


2 thoughts on “Pobs”

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