Poetry by Jeff Green


The Sound of Plumbing

by cricketjeff on March 5, 2011.  © Jeff Green, All rights reserved

I had to change the washer in a dripping bathroom tap;
The noise is most annoying if you try to have a nap,
The drip, drip, drip’s incessant, and the gurgle from the drains,
Is rather more unpleasant than the squealing brakes of trains.
I had to turn the stopcock so there wouldn’t be a flood
But I slipped and gashed my finger, lots of swearing little blood,
Then I couldn’t find a Stilson that would hold the the pipe in place,
And the basin was unfriendly, so it bashed me in the face.
There’s a screw that holds the top on and it almost got away,
There are games more fun than plumbing on a chilly Saturday.
After lots more silly dramas, and more sotto voce oaths,
I had the tap in pieces (and some rather sodden clothes)
Swapped the washer, put the top back, turned the stopcock on again,
Settled down to watch the telly with a satisfied “amen”.
But I hadn’t even started drinking tea and nodding off
When I heard a noise more loathsome than that soft “excuse me cough”.
I was seething in a second, anger held me in its grip,
From the bathroom came a gurgle and a bloody

Author notes

A tap is a faucet if you are American, a Stilson is a type of wrench that can hold irregular shaped items securely, tea is the nectar of the gods.