Martin Johns




On a bus to LA

Our pulse quickens, we get ever closer,
as if by a conjurer’s hand, lanes multiply.
Cars, RVs, trucks with mirror-silvered cabs
power on past. In the distance planes

are sucked through sunrays into LAX
others spat out into the fouled air.
The city is seeping into the landscape
a stain is spreading forever outwards.

Vehicles trying to leave the city
are held up by blue flashing lights,
from all directions hot steel and rubber
stop, jamming every stilted highway.

Logo to logo, urgent to leave to get to
wherever, whatever. Now whenever.
We continue on in, going towards what?

A stain is spreading forever outwards.



Martin Johns lives in Northamptonshire. His work has appeared in The Rialto and Acumen. His poem ‘Consignment’ is included in the anthology Over Land, Over Sea: poems for those seeking refuge.  Martin holds a Masters Degree in Creative Writing from MMU.

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