This poem was originally part of a set of five that I called ‘Cameron’s Quintet’, and is basically a reflection of the state of some of our streets. There is so much generated each year and the festive period usually sees an upsurge in this…

Please. Think twice before throwing something away… re-cycle… re-use… re-purpose… Donate…

Gangs of cans loiter in corners
Cheek by jowl with fast food wrappers
Sweet papers and pizza cartons jostle by the bins
Cushions of chewing gum trap the unwary.

Cigarette ends huddle in gutters,
Lost sheep looking for their shepherd,
Blotches of blood outside the chippy
Carpet the way forward.

Shattered shards of glass like
Dragon’s teeth glimmer
Mysteriously, beckoning to the
Lone plastic bag tumbleweeding by.

These random remnants
Signpost into the dark.

37 thoughts on “Rubbish

  1. Well written with a perfect theme!! Thankfully here we keep streets clean else there is a fine😉 Chewing gum is banned. People say it is high handed but it stopped gunk on our shoes and long tresses on buses or cinema seats. Gum free since early 1970s.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. What a good idea…I hate chewing gum. My partner gave some to our son once-I was out-and when I came back, I found him looking suspicious and my son with half an eyebrow…he’d tried to make a web on his face like Spiderman and my partner panicked when he couldn’t get it out of his eyebrow! I can laugh now…:)

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      1. haha, just to cheer you up: I have 8 people coming for dinner and the new sofa has already been slightly used by the cats, the loo stopped flushing (now fixed but the bathroom is a mess), the cooker smells of gas (panic buying of a new cooker just before Christmas, lovely), the new table and chairs haven’t arrived yet (ordered over a month ago), the newly painted wall has been chewed, old sofa and 2 tables are waiting to be removed, the garden has two human size holes in it (if the neighbours had watched ‘Rillington Place’ they are bound to phone the police soon) and Brian still doesn’t like visitors…

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      2. *waving hands in nervous agitation and empathetic panic*
        I actually had today’s mini panic earlier when I realised I’d completely forgotten to post a card to my friend in Ireland and that I’d only bought one item for my older son…I’m kind of with Brian on the subject of visitors, of the in-law variety and now I think I might go and have a little lie down. And a painkiller…!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Do you know…I hadn’t thought about that and I love T.S.Eliot..I did “The Wasteland ” for “A”Level…
      And I always told my kids to put their rubbish in their pockets or give it to me..they still do it now! And thank you for your comment 🙂

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      1. I did The Waste Land and Four Quartets for A level, hence the thinking when I saw your title! Never doubted your kids would be so well behaved and your pockets so well employed. The chewing gum story did make me laugh though!

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      2. I really enjoyed it-my son took his English “A”level earlier this year, and they did modern texts like “The Kiterunner”…good book, but I read it as a novel and found it hard to critically appraise it the way my son had to. Chewing gum..hmm..I seem to recall telling him that if he ever ate it again it would stay in his body forever and never dissolve…

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      3. I’m a bit old-fashioned. I like literature to have been around for a while, earned its place, before it is considered exam-worthy material! It is probably harder in some ways to study a modern book or poetry than a classic. Maybe that is a good reason why the exam setters do it? And my nan told me exactly the same thing about chewing gum. Except that it would also stick my insides together. Presumably avoiding the apple tree that was going to be growing in my stomach from eating the pips….

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Not familiar with that one. Have read a few of her others though, but not for a long time. I think Nights at the Circus was the last one I had. I don’t read much at all now, really. Maybe a resolution for next year! And yes, the powers of coke are legendary. I have actually used it to clean the loo before now and it worked a treat!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Litter makes me sad, it represents everything I wholeheartedly dislike: the lack of respect, the sense of entitlement, the pointless wastefulness…I try to buy food without plastic packaging (from farmers markets, small greengrocers, local butchers) but I still produce loads of waste (supermarkets are handy, I do use them a lot, too)
    Well, a lovely poem nonetheless 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Well written Samantha and we get litter here too on the beaches, especially in the summer. The community comes together with organised litter picks and we all do our bit when we see something that should not be there. Culprits will be fined when they are caught and the rest of the time we take positive action ourselves.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Great poem and oh so true.. what happened to the lesson we were taught as kids to never drop litter.. I just can’t do it and yet I see people chuck all sorts out of their car windows.. Including a used nappy that I witnessed the car in front chuck out of the window! They weren’t happy when they stopped at the traffic lights and I got out and gave them a piece of my mind… Love the story about the gum.. very comical! x

    Liked by 2 people

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