{An Umbrella Special Feature}

Rory Waterman

was born in Belfast in 1981, but grew up mostly in eastern England.

Fourteen of his poems are included in New Poetries V (Carcanet, 2011) and a first collection is forthcoming with Carcanet.

He co-edits New Walk magazine

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Snot-billed brats in playsuits lump about
in ball-pens, squiggle through tubes
to squishy mats, then laugh or scream again.
Others chew biscuits, or writhe like dogs in prams.

Enough to put me off my carrot pressé,
my hunk of crumble cake. Then a two-foot scruff
with saucer eyes waddles to my knee,

fingers his nose as if uncorking it,
and asks me plainly, sweetly, who I am.

Perhaps I’m not the man I’d like to be.


[Originally published in Times Literary Supplement.]