Barry (expletive deleted) Island

A little unfair on the place but an accurate memory of life in Barry Island in 1980  – one long sweaty Moratoire Noir with beach balls.


Barry (expletive deleted) Island

I had a seaside girlfriend then
with a suntanned UV’d soul
steered through love and mayhem
with a dodgem-car control.

I used to lie entrenched, entranced
scorched and swilling lager kegs
interlocked our hands; romanced
sand scratching at post-coitus dregs.

Deep our shore-line penetration
parting sun-toned, gym-honed legs
electromotive stimulation
moves her mouth and so she begs:

Amidst the corpulent discharge;
noxious chavs and burger-bars
bodies baste in extra large
dollops from their sun-screen jars.

I felt some intellectual shame
watching dicks deep-fried in sun-block
play their brand new seaside game:
‘let’s twat some Arab with a rock!’

She was my sweaty talisman
I could easily have strangled
as I helped the flailing deck-chair man
who was hopelessly entangled.

So I read my book and found the sea
full of missing kids, dead fish
I emerged between two jobbies
with a most un-Christian wish.

Sand all sticky with melted fat
moist oiled Megs and dark mauve Marvins
lobster monsters, thongs and tat
their picnics keep the gulls from starving.

Some bonk like bunnies in the dunes
or finger-fudge in the coaster cars
while the wind now whistles out of tune
as they all grow melanomas.

Deft-wrist flicks of deck-chair man
draws sneers from sweltering Goths
mascara drips on each lager can
of these black-clad frazzled moths.

‘Alas,’ she said, ‘our love can’t last’
a chill forebodes as evening falls:
‘my time with you has been a blast’
– drowned by raucous seagull calls.

‘This town is not for me’, she cried;
‘I’m returning home to Ireland’
She took my hands and gently lied:
‘We’ll always have Barry Island.’

Be still my beating heart inside:
Barry (expletive deleted) Island!!!


(c) 2010 2016 Paul D E Mitchell


© mitch 2023
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Enjoyed this very much, it had me hooked from the beginning. I went to Barry Island once, and obviously missed it’s high point. It had fallen on hard times, down at heel and grubby. My daughter,10, paddled once in the brown sullen sea, caught a vicious tummy bug and spent the week too ill to enjoy anything. Ah happy days!

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