There’s a war on, you know?

So my schooling as an artist, well,

It isn’t in much demand right now

from the galleries and rich folk.


For better or worse, you know?

Painting plyboard pays the rent,

and to be honest, I like it a lot,

this working with people, and the sun.


The ladies I paint? Surrealism, you know?

Nobody could live as skinny as them,

all flesh and bone, waist so tiny,

you’d think her spine would be fatter.


We’re not starving here — look at me —

but I had this dream last night, women and children and men, dying in dirty camps,

like animals. When? Why? I don’t know.

(after the unattributed 1940 photograph, “Decorating the hoardings on the shattered shopfronts of Oxford Street, London”)