Love Locked Out of the Library

I am local, I say. I’ve published a novel
about the Kennet Navigation startup hell.
Would you like a gift copy for this library?
“No. We can’t put such books on our System, you see.”
But it does have an ISBN, I posit,
and six copies are in the Legal Deposit.
She must check with her boss (who hides in their nook),
reports back, “The System will not accept your book”.
Ah, The System. Yours it seems is a Mastodon
that trumpets a course of invalid inaction.
“We might buy your book if you put in a request.”
Buy one, reject one for free – that’s madness manifest.
++It’s just what I need to boost the writer in me –
++I can’t give away my magnum opus for free.

Cippenham library, Slough
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Akash, Don’t Ah-Ask

Four guys went to the Akash in Burnham,
but before the final two were seated,
the group was told “You want eight papadum”.
This sharp injunction was thrice repeated.
The four guys had not opened their menus
when they were told “You want four Cobra beer”.
Asking for one tap water, just three booze,
caused a look of derision with a sneer.
They ordered four, but eight papadums came,
with chutney so thin it spilled when rotated.
The flavour of the mains was just as lame,
biryani rice met meat – when plated.
++“You want four guys” to return to Akash?
++Then exhibit good taste and be less brash.

Chutney arc on tablecloth, Akash, Burnham
Chutney arc on tablecloth, Akash, Burnham

(Akash restaurant, Burnham, Bucks)

Sunken Standards in Marina

Shall I compare you to some other day
when you were more lovely, considerate?
This time you wiped our table without spray,
so glass and surface formed a bonded state.
You left a trail of drops pouring our wine.
We sought the napkin to clean up your mess.
Of thrice asked tap water there was no sign.
We sought a willing naiad procuress.
Twice we told staff of no toilet paper.
We sought the boss but still none came from store.
We sought a spoon to share our quinoa.
We sought the chilly draught and closed one door.
++So long have we dined here pleasurably.
++“So long,” if this is your normality.

Tasty Leggera pizza and Superfood salad

(Pizza Express, Brighton Marina)