This was one of those signs that you really had to read twice.  buskers It’s on the gate to the bandstand down by the River Dee.  I know it’s possible to book a slot, to play, on the bandstand, though I’ve no idea as to the process.  But there’s no reference to that here, just this cold, hard sign.

I’ve written a quick email to the council.  But I think the sign’s really, well, sad.

So here’s a poem to offer the other view.

No Buskers

It’s a sign,
reflecting the whole,
if we’re not careful,
of something leaving.

No buskers.

The street is thick
with the national dream
pawned to us
by cheap grey suits.

No buskers.

You’re all in a rush
to be somewhere else,
chasing something
only you can see.

No buskers.

I can hear nothing
but piped music,
elevator music,
canned musak.

No buskers.

Words fail me.
A phone rings endlessly.
The sky leans in.
It begins to rain.

No buskers.

But there’s nothing
that can’t be fixed
with gaffer tape
and love.

Imagine a new sign,
tape and a distraction.
Your support;
all of us together.

Let the negativity
slip into the flow,
with the river.
Take away one word.



A tune, a voice, a chord
calls in the street
time waits patiently
for all of us.


So I forget who I am,
where I am going;
all my cares.
but you’re with me,
and this is where we are.


3 thoughts on “No Buskers

  1. Your poem is a great response to the council’s soullessness. Why not photocopy it and paste A4 sheets all around the bandstand for the public to enjoy? (Unless there is a ‘NO POEMS’ sign)

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