Fleet of Foot

By | 1 May 2017

Quiet at the pool today
lake-like in its repose, no youth
ripping the air asunder
with howls and whoops.
After my swim, in the change-room,
a centurion on twig legs
steps into the showers.

Below his shiny head, his face maps
a thousand trails, a thousand yarns,
eyes and mouth near forfeited
in the jagged topography.

Wisps of hair like sleet
line the ridges of his shoulders.
His cock (retired) snuggles
in a little glade of groin.
The man appears to have on socks
but the night blue colour
is actual skin.

The centurion turns.
Turf wars play out over his back:
wrinkles, liver spots, blotches,
gangs of colonisers all vying
for carrion. Two skimpy carry bags
of skin denote his arse, the pits
of his knees house tangles
of angry veins.

The man shuts off the water,
rubs a towel across his skin,
drapes clothes over his skeleton.

He departs across the grass where,
flanking the compost heap,
some dead vines latch onto
his foot. He kicks them off
with a two-step, turns fleet of foot
and gives me the finger.

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