Radio man, wrecks my plan.

We do our best to deal with it,
each in our own bumble of orbit.

I search online.
Don’t know what I’m looking for.
End up with much more than I bargained.

So many questions. And each one webs another.
This sequence of photographs, possible clues
divided by decades. Here, the Brylcreem of ’31 –
hell just around the corner.

And then, fast forward, the anatomy of cars.
Ban the bomb lights of a sixties Ford.
Bald man, on the far right. Could be…

What a shock when I get to ’84.

There he is! My Grandfather, still playing pranks,
after all these years, from beyond the grave

in a monochrome summer, the Mirror reading,
beer drinking gardener, commoner,

somehow smuggled into this scene of academia.

A future historian may well assume
that he was indeed one of the academic staff.
Perhaps a Latin professor. Lord knows, he looks the part…


Jonathan Chant
Illustration: Atlanta Wiggs

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