Poetry: The Dinner Bell
Words: Sam O'Hana
It’s true that breaking the peace works.
Once the golden tonsil kerrangs out,
each of the family imagines jumping to attention.
Even so, we are slow to act, taking turns to be the last to abandon computer and television
And each time, even in the mind it is a voice that penetrates the Victorian walls with
all the clarity of a Funktion One soundsystem.
How many times we were rallied at the table to a perfect arrangement of legumes,
vegetables and spices was never counted or archived in libraries.
Water, and Boddingtons for Dad.
But for each meal that was placed before us, the industry, patience and planning of
a mother working within the walls of unemployment, flavoured the years of simple living.
It’s true that the break from work is peaceful.
In the student home, we are each others dinner bells, a shout from the Mancunian,
German, Dane or Brightonite to join at the sofa, bar, dancefloor and we’ve been having
beef, chorizo, rocket, brie, paté, Pilsner, forgotten wines, mdma.
Whatever the allowance provided, It’ll be taken it to the limit. Then carefully go beyond the
boundaries, checking my pockets for receipts and bills.
But in a few seconds, I’ll turn from this screen to take a mouthful of potato with red
lentil curry and house music, phone calls, lectures will be ringing in my ears.