What is poetry town?

Poetry Town began in 2015 with a weekly poem displayed in the window of Kirkdale Bookshop. Following overwhelmingly positive responses from customers we have decided to partner with Sydenham Arts to build on the idea and fill Sydenham with poetry­ not just by famous poets but by local people, both young and old.
Disregard by Ai (1947 - 2010)
20th September 2017

Overhead, the match burns out,

but the chunk of ice in the back seat

keeps melting from imagined heat,

while the old Hudson tiptoes up the slope.

My voile blouse, so wet it is transparent,

like one frightened hand, clutches my chest.

The bag of rock salt sprawled beside me wakes, thirsty

and stretches a shaky tongue toward the ice.


I press the gas pedal hard.

I’ll get back to the house, the dirt yard, the cesspool,

to you out back, digging a well

you could fill with your sweat,

though there is not one reason I should want to.

You never notice me until the end of the day,

when your hand is on my knee

and the ice cream, cooked to broth,

is hot enough to burn the skin off my touch.