Mr Wonder is 71 today. God bless him!
A portrait – assembled from match-day programmes over forty hours-plus – of a former Burnley Football Club goalkeeper, Brian Jensen otherwise known as ‘The Beast’.
A man walks. That’s all he does.
This man wants war, a literary and artistic one. He works hard at both tasks when they aren’t contained in one slow attempt. His attempts are sporadic yet the desperation within him is on his face. The way he stays in front of the stretched paper, frowning as if lost, however he keeps at his task.
A break is called for; a need for human contact, and the unpredictability which is built into any encounter. He kicks off his shorts, checks the towel is dry on the back of the bathroom door and steps into the narrow bath to quickly shower. The cafe he is headed to will be semi-busy with lunching ladies. Mums and daughters on a dutiful catch-up. Wives able to prolong a careless work-free existence after mothering at home has turned into rousing teenagers in time to leave the house for school. These ladies tolerate him, he thinks, as he turns left then right under the water. He’s local colour. Or is he now in the eccentric, weird zone?
He steps out, bends over to dry each foot propped up on the edge of the side of the bath and carries out his usual ritual of giving himself up to the sight of his body in the long mirror stashed by the sink. It never doles out a favour except to remind him his stomach folds don’t sync with the chicken legs. There is a reason why he has pasted advice on avoiding regret and shame on the wall near the toilet, and here is another slip of proof to add to the mountain he works on. Far better to stand in front of the sink and try to provoke a pair of smiling eyes.
After ten times or so of tugging the door handle to his flat’s front door to ensure he did perform that task successfully, and so that slip is taken off the pile, the ship-like corridor is walked and the once-polished stone steps practically jumped.
At the cafe man left yet seclusion?
In will one try kid ship slow, which
due of proof the door has himself,
towel to stretched task
after war, when stomach inside
certainly exists under front
Youth up the times
all stone turns apology pile
except to he that are by his
and already the desperation;
regret the mothering edge.
Doles end man.
Attempt at school inside walked left. Is
it the rousing end of kid A? Why the
mirror at need ritual? They encounter
his unpredictability, his avoiding semi handle –
both in familiar by a coming (he
of usual steps: welcome, catch, perform)
Propped and man off in polished
and up however thinks and
remembers pile into attempts
together of wives. Easy exists
on water. His contained ladies.
This mums and like within on now
each to tolerate for giving in near.