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A Place To Eat

The fruit machine thumped
like a Bofors gun,
spitting tokens.

Before Little Chef spawned
and swallowed them,
the Greasy Spoons
hung like fat neon apples
down all the major roads.

Puddle hopping from the Mini
across the pitted lorry park
up to the flat roofed 50’s
don’t-care-how-it-looks café,
we rattled through the door.
Windows weeping with steam,
bouquet of bacon blended with
fat and tobacco smoke,
chips sizzling, eggs spluttering
jukebox simmering in the corner.

This is where we came
to eat, cheap and well.
Steak and kidney pudding,
roast beef and Yorkshire,
boiled cabbage and carrots,
sausage and chips,
egg and chips,
spam and chips …
anything and chips.
Spotted dick, golden sponge,
bread and butter pudding,
scalding thin custard,
fiery mugs of tea.

We scooped up the tokens,
and tall as kings
clattered them
onto the counter.
“Two full breakfasts!”
we said.

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