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The Moment


Published in the Mayfield and District U3A anthology 2015 and in the Kingston University Readers festival – Short Cuts 2008.

The Moment

There is silence.

For a brief moment

we search for something

in our heads

worth writing.

A scratching of pens

from my right,

my left,

in front of me,

echoes round baronial walls.


We sit in dutiful rows

inventing our futures.

I hear hints of breathing,

of concentration.

But I sit staring,



I can feel their competence.

Thoughts flow from their heads

through their hands

and pour onto paper.

I am mesmerised by the flood,

the waterfall of words.


And still they write.

No pause,

relentless scratching.

Their papers scorch with the heat

while the sheet before me

remains coldly, laughingly blank.


I close my eyes,

search for a cauldron of words

I can turn on its side

the contents cascading to my rescue.

In sixty seconds

I see the futility

of the last three years,

living my life

with dry bread and desk lamps.


So now the moment is here

I am about to let it pass

without a fight.

Michael R Chapman
~ master of none ~
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