Wednesday, 15 October 2014

New Poem: Ticket

I once had a job at a cinema and I had to check

people’s tickets. I was standing at the barrier one

Sunday and people were coming through all the

time with their tickets when a woman came up

with a piece of paper and handed it to me. I could

see straightaway that it wasn’t a ticket. The tickets

were all on white pieces of paper and her bit of

paper was light green.

I said, ‘I’m sorry, but this isn’t a ticket.’

She said, ‘I don’t think you’ve looked at it.’

I said, ‘I don’t need to look at it, it’s green.’

‘Look at it,’ she said.

‘OK, I’ll look at it,’ I said.

It was folded over. I opened it up. On it was

written, ‘This could be a ticket.’

I said, ‘This isn’t a ticket.’

She said, ‘Read it.’

I said, ‘I have read it.’

‘No, read it out loud,’ she said.

I read it out loud: ‘This could be a ticket.’

‘There you are,’ she said.

‘No it isn’t, ‘there you are’.’ All it says, is ‘This

could be a ticket’. It doesn’t say that it is a ticket.’

‘That’s because that would be a lie. Obviously,’

she said.

‘Right,’ I said, ‘It isn’t a ticket. Look there are

people waiting to come in,’

‘No, no,’ she said, ‘the point is, it could be a


I said, ‘Yes, yes, it could be, but it isn’t.’

‘But what it says there is that it’s possible.

It’s not impossible. There is a chance that it

could be.’

‘I’m supposed to let you in, on the

off chance that this is a ticket?’ I said.

‘Well,’ she said, ‘you don’t want to be in the

situation where it really was a ticket and you didn’t

let me in. You’d be in all sorts of trouble.

Lawyers, police, stories in the papers.’

I looked at her. I looked round to see if my

manager was there. She wasn’t.

I said, ‘OK, go in.’