Playtime from the Classroom Window


It’s as if nothing’s changed:
they go galloping out,
trample through the seagulls’ camp,
secure slowly round and close corrals.

Young manes flutter,
heads toss vain bravadoes.
Suddenly feet shift,
break into movement;

eddies of delicious panic
churn in on themselves;
splashing shrieks drench
the towering cliffs of sky,

then subside, lapping
round the million stars
like a spent froth
of useless S.O.S. It is

as if death’s not long pounced
and dragged one off –
what isn’t, never was,
declare their brazen eyes,

so does the quietening bell
calling the children in, 
while the seagulls circle back
to reclaim their domain.


© Nemo 2020
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critique and comments welcome.
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Took me a few reads to completely take your poem in, the penny finally dropped and I could see the scene you created so cleverly and I really enjoyed it, mind you I was rather cross with the antagonists and if they were mine a good telling off would be forthcoming very quickly. Sue 🙂


Hi Gerald, On Monday I read this numerous times, struck by the masterful way you combined cinemascope and Dolby Surround Sound. I wanted to nominate it then for its evocative nature and tactile feel alone. I felt a little out of my depth when it came to correlating the poetry to the intention. Like all the faceless mass, I neither commented nor nominated.. After re-reading, following your comments to Sue, which came about because I couldn’t put the piece down, the metaphor is clear and perfect IMHO. And the poem is not faulty, it is the reader, not surprisingly…. cheers,… Read more »


Sorry not to have commented before, like Jim…I was a little lost. Your explanation to Sue makes everything clear. The meds I’m on stifle my brain and I’m a bit slow on the uptake these days.
Now that I have the missing link I can appreciate the depth of your writing.
You really are a class act Gerald.


I see you’ve renamed this three times in the past, Gerald. It is very difficult to give a needed hint as to what has preceded this extremely skilfully-written poem, that is, in a short title. I think with these historically factual and deeply tragic poems inaccurate misintepretation should if possible be avoided. But, I think the present title change is too dramatic considering the finer nuances you’ve achieved in describing the onlooker’s philosophical broodings. As we here continue to ponder over and enjoy your brilliant poetry written during your most fruitful years, I can only say again that its’ a… Read more »


Yes, I think that’s solved it. Best accomplished by small changes in the main text of the poem like you’ve done.

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