It cost a fortune to be there, flying from
Manchester's airport. I paid in soul first. Pangs.
Birth. Growth. Reluctant ageing. Reluctant age.
And I carry my payment all about me.
Signs of Dublin, other streets, daily trodden
On, leaving memories and forgotten things.
And afterwards, other charges, more, unseen.
An airport tax, a security guard, proud,
Friendly in his voice, eyeing the suspicion,
Offence of water. Recently bought. Caesar
Paid a fortune to buy this unwelcome thing.
"I'm afraid you can't take that liquid through, sir."
Water is no terrorist. Freedom fighter
Rather. Liberating flesh, keeping it young.
But, Judas without a kiss, I leave its crime
Unquestioned. Hand water to death. Its end-time.
Inside, treachery forgot, just memories,
I pay more, more money-fortunes on the same.
The taxi-driver knew this. Cost-a-fortune
Of things. He flew Cheap Air. Paid more to return.
And afternoons drives littered streets, crumpled shapes,
People in theatre doors: 'Best show in town.'
We pass, forgetting now, beneath spring-shine sun,
Talk, Saturday afternoon, a sky-blue team.
He'd "seen it all before, you see. The despair.
City going down. Sold out. In all his years
Can't complain now. Treated well. Fans. Kids go free.
We're not used to success, but". Me neither, I say.
They're billion billionaires own his team.
I sweat, spring-shine sun. Pay a fortune on clothes.
I fly Cheap Air too. Just like him. Jet-setting
As masses do. Save a fortune. Vodka-coke
Ladies, from a bottle, "not his business",
Go to Milan, "mix it in toilets", giggle
Without water. I travel on to Dublin,
Loud holiday hats, girls in pink, boys in black.
They talk numbers: one; two; three; four; five; and down
In one. Loud talk of youthful pleasures, their own.
I age. I do not eat in Hard Rock Cafe
And afters of lager-beer. Always comes up
In morning. I think rather, cost-a-fortune,
Of Dublin streets, long trodden, daily cleaned.
Until we're there, passenger scramble. Bend. Wait.
Race start. I might spend a fortune of time, sat,
Cool in my seat; and might save a fortune too,
No energies spent. But I observe, aged soul,
That cost-a-fortunes, save-a-fortunes still cost.
And thought-done, collect things, forget much, go home.