There on the corner, stripped back
looking grey and bland, once
the Villa Franca where we ate lobsters
almost regularly, in my twenties when
our pockets bulged, but now I live without
them, hardly ever giving crayfish a thought.
What makes me sad? Further down Scott St
there’s a terrace I decided worth buying to name
Dante’s Inferno and turn the underground level
into a nightclub, since party places were rare
here, when I was fifteen in the last century.
I admit the prospect of flooding didn’t enter
my mind. Back to the reason for gloom:
Certainly not lost chances at entrepreneurial
glory or making a killing on real estate.
Which 19th century remnant was it? Memory
is fickle and depends on importance.
It was probably the one for sale at the time
so long ago. Around about then my life’s
ambition, apart from administering world peace
was to have twelve children and become
a radio announcer, air hostess, kindergarten
teacher or own an Armstrong Sidley
because I fell in love with one and its luscious
leathery smell in a showroom near my bus stop
for school. Those times, pre-five-year plans
we imagined one day ahead
and everything was possible.