Iron Bridge Pub, Exeter

A carved teak bowl, flat bottom, a spout

two miniature dugout canoes

an incandescent lamp-lit bulb

retrieved from Edison’s throwaways

wax candle, clay bottle, large spool (no thread)

tightly wound roll of string (not twine)

with a medieval sewing machine

and painting of Devon embossed in black lacquer

in the tiniest Hollywood spotlight

(imagine the hill with white letters)

there’s a brassy Victrola gramophone horn

and rusty metallic kettle

the part of a mixer used to whip

by a framed bit of silver-tree fern

twenty small samples of clover and nettle

pressed into rows like used stamps

a small oaken vessel or cask of a sort

with polished rim, handle and crest

I’m certain my Baba and Dido had one

on a shelf at the farm in their kitchen

all this treasure, revealed, displayed

on a plank-paneled wall in a pub

a perfectly itemized poem

I simply need to write down

if only I’d brought a pencil!

Author, poet, songwriter Bill Arnott is the bestselling author of Gone Viking: A Travel Saga. Bill’s work appears in journals and anthologies in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia. When not trekking the globe with a small pack and journal, Bill can be found on Canada’s west coast, usually misbehaving. Visit their website, and follow them on IG/Twitter @billarnott_aps.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *