Poem- 17 (5.2)

 Teesta Review: A Journal of Poetry, Volume 5, Number 2. November 2022. ISSN: 2581-7094


I See You

--- Simon-Peter Telford


I see you.

I see you from the grime-stained window

of the bus that takes me back

to the place you won’t go.


I see your expensive leisure sportswear,

made to look casual and costs more

than I live off in a


I see the stores that line the street,

every second shop a hairdresser.

Every third a café

or bar

or restaurant

with some fancy name that rolls off the tongue

like venom.


The conversations burning through concrete

in the righteous piety

of the well to do aristocrats.


I see you

and I don’t see myself.


I don’t see the days I carried a screwdriver

in-case I was mugged.

I don’t see the crime.

I don’t see the oh so dreaded welfare lines.

But I want to.


I carry the weight of cheap fried food

and a distaste for vegetables.

Well, what do you expect?

They were always microwaved,




frozen things.

Have you tried to buy fresh vegetables? They are expensive.


Leave the onions and potatoes to us,

and I’m sick of hearing about avocados.


I don’t hate you,

well maybe I do,

but I don’t want to.


If anything, it’s an immature jealousy.

An ugly boy’s stare at the handsome man

plastered on the side of a bus.


Do you think if I bought that pair of underwear

I’d look that good?

Do you think if I had that designer dog

I’d feel that good?

Do you think if I lived on that street,

I’d feel any different?


Maybe that’s where this animosity,

this bubbling of acidic champagne, comes from.

Maybe I’m just disappointed in myself.

Maybe I see you, and I see me.


Interliminal Encounters: Indian and Australian writers in po(i)etic dialogue, eds Amelia Walker and Aden Burg