Army Cadets is where the best
and most intense kids is
their base is on the Avon
river, by and by the old dis-
connect bridge where the most
keen, privy, do suicide a load
well at least three times

in the last local century.
Cadets was a hut and cricket pitch,
in wetter condition, much less size, 
plus stacked in iron rungs some
yellowing, no: just yellow
canoes. And hanging in those Cadet   
sheds the spray bibs and rows

of oars whose hands are so 
loathsome-to-neatness opposed by like
thirty degrees at most. It’s funny   
because the land is the land, but at
water height you’re really
zero, cold. And hero might
not be what you thought all along.

The water weevils like a nub
at the shore, the pressure of
being here at all just forming
muscled emboss on top no waves
or cool stuff like surfable bores
and they all ignore or just tickle 
you and your canoe.

Life jacket style suits you 
moves your boobs up, boosts you,
orange, blue spray bib all
cockatoo. A couple of mums 
drink tea on the bank trying to
remember what that posh boat
event was, up the Thames

that’s what jokes are said
on the bank that day, they laugh,
gaily, what did you say? Yes, oh lord,
that one. Where’s my hat at?  
The boys give the grips of their shoes mud, 
mud and cold, which by the way was not just cold, 
you cannot know.

The river laughed at the month (March)
the month didn’t back
the mums capri’d many jokes
that the river if only, 
could laugh at too.
Oh, and up in town, just after this,
one local (a girl), same school,

donated her liver to science
but gradually. 
She had no intensity. 
Canoe Proficiency level 2 test 
was pretty hard, though a couple of kids 
worked an eskimo under the imperceptible
river slope and came up soaked, 

lungs not entirely able to cope. 
Mums cheered though. Canoes were put
back on rungs, all the time the
water was like: what. And the
unrecovered Chippenham sons, 
only sons, last century anyway, 
became Avon, day by gradual day.