Robert Yates

Robert Yates

Robert Yates's poems have been published in the Morning Star, Abraxas Agenda Broadsheet and the International Times website. His most recent collection Nihilistic City Nights was published in 2020 by London Poetry Books.

I keep forgetting that I live in London
Tuesday, 20 July 2021 10:51

I keep forgetting that I live in London

Published in Poetry

I keep forgetting that I live in London

by Robert Yates

the clientele abusing the computers in the library consist of:
hyperactive schoolkids for whom this is a social centre
once in a green moon they are asked to be quiet
a dotty old bat who can’t enter data without muttering
a convulsant jerk unlodging epileptically the bag he has stuffed behind the monitor
and anyone who can hammer keys like a pile-driver

the nearest supermarket specialises in
overfrozen microchips, crushed biscuits and soggy “crusty” rolls

a painfully thin careers adviser with painfully long fingernails
asks me how many languages I can speak
“None,” I reply, “I’m a

she doesn’t believe me
the world consists of stammerers and those who want to be
I blame Kenneth Tynan and Marilyn Monroe

my downstairs neighbour has bare wooden floorboards and a wailing child
and a stereo that thuds out over half the estate
he says it is a pocket transistor radio; he should get it patented
he has to get up at half past five in the morning to be a twat

I don’t live in London; I live in london