Thursday, March 14, 2019

HEAVEN IS A NEAR EMPTY BAR. by Bradford Middleton

Outside this room the country crawls on
Failing as it always does when the snow comes
A centimetre will leave the trains paralysed and
The planes will remain grounded but here
I don't care as I sit alone, planning on nothing
Beyond a visit to a dealer or maybe a walk along
The promenade to check out just how few
People there are around.  Last night I went to
My local and had a few beers and a run of whiskies
But on the way there I was the only one walking
Down my old street with the sea on one side
And empty holiday lets on the other and I got to
Confess, as I walked along, high and smoking again
I did pause momentarily, looked around and declared
Yeah, this is beautiful.  That reality was broken all
To sunder as soon as I walked in the bar to
Discover people, only a few but still too many, had
Ventured out and dared to invade this space that I
Hoped would just be mine so I simply did my drinking
Mostly alone and in peace before turning, knowing
Finally that 'hell is other people' as I left, walking back home.

Bradford Middleton was born in south-east London during the summer of 1971 and won his first poetry prize at the age of nine.  He then gave up writing poems for nearly twenty-five years and it wasn't until he landed in Brighton, knowing no one and having no money, that he began again.  Ten years later and he's been lucky enough to have had a few chapbooks published including a new one from Analog Submission Press entitled 'Flying through this Life like a Bottle Battling Gravity', his debut from Crisis Chronicles Press (Ohio, USA) and his second effort for Holy & Intoxicated Press (Hastings, UK).  He has read around the UK at various bars, venues and festivals and is always keen to get out and read to new crowds. His poetry has also been or will be published shortly in the Chiron Review, Zygote in my Coffee, Section 8, Razur Cuts, Paper & Ink, Grandma Moses 'Poet to Notice', Empty Mirror, Midnight Lane Gallery, Bareback Lit and is a Contributing Poet over at the wonderful Mad Swirl.  If you like what you've read go send a friend request on facebook to bradfordmiddleton1.

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