Caught by the River

Pumpkin Eaters

Dexter Petley | 19th September 2007


your carp is the last surviving spitfire from the battle of atlantis. gawain’s supper caught on a green knight. mine are just baby-boomers, demobbed galicians whose scales fell from their eyes. mine skulk in boilie-bunkers, fox-holes and nutrabait nuthouses; yours do night-school ballistics, shooting out lights and littering their lake bed with burned out mitchell 300s. and how did you get that photo of marc bolan, david carl forbes and dick walker wearing their emerson, lake & palmers? or are they the mortgage flock queing up to take their feed out of the foot&mouth bank? wicker basket men at the weigh-in, the day 5drams of bleak took the sweepstake. the roach in the rollneck jumper looks familiar. there must have been a hole in frank barlow’s keepnet.

they’re playing chicken at penelope pit now the wind is a stiff draft. yesterday evening the rain turned a dirty tackle and i stood like a horse under an oak tree waiting for it to stop, waiting for the haybale that never comes. drove home early with a mud flap missing, listening to the slap of manure hitting the chassis (they’re ploughing as i scatter). today i dried the kit outside and nearly didn’t fish. tossed a coin, the nogent pit opted to bat. it’s a weary walk round it now, having to pack extra kilos of english wool for the chilly mist and the cold blade of a machete moon. i needn’t have bothered. this 28-a-day hattie jakes broke her asbo and made a run for macdonalds in evening dress as i sat in the late sun editing a novel about drinking guinness.

how did your olympic wildies running on chic pea fuel become these gas guzzlers? didn’t yours strip the skin off your knuckles? mine jogged a few yards then threw up on the mat.
night fell hard though, sky like a chav’s ford escort windscreen, moon hanging off the rear view, white smoke coming off the water, autumn revs, souped up and glazing the rods in dew which sent a chill down the line. days drawing in tighter than a lynch mob culling wicker men.

phoenix on the bird table