You May Turn Over and Begin
‘Which of these films was Dirk Bogarde not in? One hundredweight of bauxite
makes how much aluminium?
how many tales in ‘The Decameron’?’
General Studies, the upper sixth, a doddle, a cinch for anyone with an ounce of common sense
or a calculator with a memory feature.
Having galloped through but not caring enough to check or double-check, I was dreaming of
milk-white breasts and nakedness, or more specifically virginity.
That term – everybody felt the heat but the girls were having none of it:
long and cool like cocktails, out of reach, their buns and pigtails
only let out for older guys with studded jackets and motor-bikes and spare helmets.
One jot of consolation was the tall spindly girl riding pillion
on her man’s new Honda who, with the lights at amber,
put down both feet and stood to stretch her limbs, to lift the visor and push back her fringe
and to smooth her tight jeans.
As he pulled off down the street
she stood there like a wishbone, high and dry, her legs wide open,
and rumour has it he didn’t notice til he came round in the ambulance
having underbalanced on a tight left-hander.
‘A Taste of Honey’. Now I remember.
Copyright: Simon Armitage.