(Listen to the poem)

Some events wait
beneath your bed
all night,
or months if you are slumbering deep,
and grab your ankles by their teeth
when you get up
and snarl and grind and gnash
dragged down the corridor
and all the way through breakfast
for every breakfast ever afterwards.Some fall off roofs and ladders
losing their balance
because you breathed a little hard.
Some are just out for a jog
and bump into you as you both
round a corner in the park.
Some warmly clasp your hands
and hail you by somebody
else’s name.
Some seem to follow you all day
but look away and cross the road
when you turn round.
Some events
sit in an armchair, silently,
facing you for years,
clearing their throats
every once and then.
Some events come up and
I’m sorry but I’m almost out of time,
could I occur to you?
Some really have your number
and grab you as you walk out
of the door.
Some events fall drunk
into your arms and pass out
before they have a chance
to really happen.
Some events come from in front,
some from behind, some you just sit on carelessly.
The world has many corners
we can’t see.
To our dim eyes
there is no scheme, no season,
no rhyme, no right time,
or right reason, the stream
of things does not flow straight,
or even run in meanders,
it jumps and turns and falls
from anywhere and when
into our lives.
All I can say is
sweep carefully,
sweep well below your beds
before you sleep.

                                                                                Phillip Hill 2008

Listen to the poem


(This poem is included in my book The Observation Car which is available from

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s