Illusionists – by Robert Nisbet


Sawn in half nightly, plus Saturday matinees,
knives sizzling past the right ear then the left.
Samantha, his glamorous assistant. Later on,
brewing the midnight teabags, totting accounts.
In time wrapping herself around him,
like sweetpea clinging to a mighty edifice.

PAs, Girl Fridays, running shows. The wives,
the my-good-ladies, doling out the pocket money.

But Helen the helpmeet, in their tiny-town terrace.
When Ronnie, thirty, wizard footballer, was crocked,
she tended. When Ron turned inward to a bleak mind,
she took the pain, his pain and hers, kept the peace.
Kept, for callers, a tidy house, united front.



Robert Nisbet, a creative writing tutor from Pembrokeshire, was the winner of this year’s Prole Poetry Pamphlet Competition with Robeson, Fitzgerald and Other Heroes.

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