Our used words give the game away –
all – ‘the’ and ‘big’, ‘lottery’, ‘dream’.
We emphasise the definite,
for this is it, score underlined,
the win that turned our life around,
that served as headline on our lips –
but will it too be headstone script,
or is this term determinate?
Big is what we think is great,
large, jumbo, mighty change of scene,
drags power, influence in its wake,
is better than all other fakes
and makes all else of no regard –
those candles flickering in the dark,
warm smiles, or helping hands, kind sense.
The lottery is chancer’s win,
a gambling den in weekly slots,
unnoticed cash in pocket change,
investment at another’s cost,
the hosts of losers all around
who just like me can bear the loss –
though added up, it might have brought
a legacy, with interest.
What dream is it I hunger for,
those beach sand castles in the air,
that crumble, wave-washed, disappear,
brief marked by froth, then haunt of crabs,
until next tide leaves clear the space,
another bucket, spade, child’s cheer?
Those naïve joys of innocence,
excitements first encountered with
surrounding family of love
cannot be bought, found in account,
save through the nurtured trust I knew.
Stephen Kingsnorth (Cambridge M.A., English & Religious Studies), retired to Wales from ministry in the Methodist Church, has had over 200 pieces published by on-line poetry sites, including Poetry Potion, printed journals and anthologies. https://poetrykingsnorth.wordpress.com/