One Poem by Robert Nisbet

Bread Round

A small Welsh town, 1960s

Bread stacked in the van by eight,
the white tin, Hovis, brown and batch,
and we’re grinding up Tower Hill,
Donny and Cliff up front,
I (student, politics at Cardiff)
jammed behind with the bread.

Passing Spike, window down,
the first volley of badinage
(Don’t look so rough, boy),
and we park, grab baskets.

Postmen, delivery boys on bikes.
Good nature’s noise is endless.
It’s ribald sentiment, it’s platitudes,
affection’s insults, moral saws,
laconic shift-your-arse.

In our tea break I calculate
(custard slices, by the way,
macaroons, éclairs and doughnuts),
these boys are on this round today
for roughly the nine thousand,
three hundred and thirtieth time.

I have one essay yet to write for term,
Wales and the labour movement.


Robert Nisbet is a poet from West Wales whose work is published quite widely in Britain and the USA. One of his poems appears in the anthology Universal Oneness, from Authorspress of New Delhi.

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