TransPennine Express Meditation

Mystery sentences erase themselves leaving

little to cling to: train into tunnel with a rushing

crack, the child's reflection jolting away eyes

white; his sister says 'That was a very

naughty tunnel' then buddleia

forcing through the old mortar of the stone

abutment and many other things.

I attempted a contemplative sit. 30 minutes.

In the meditation period the man next

to me drank two cans of Pils: I already had

a hangover: time

converged. And a woman

in yellow jeans wore the words LOVE

YOU in metals discs on a belt while

a moving script of dim

lights advised TAKE


WITH YOU but I didn't have all

my belongings with me or

maybe I did, maybe I did –

what was all the distant stuff in houses/garages/offices

anyway, colanders, brushes, diaries, spirit

levels inside dark boxes not here – but we were

passing the bridges rivers and roads of unstarted journeys.

Memories of unvisited parkland cut with the sluices and culverts of the

whole grid layout opened to a reclaimed and

unsayable statement, 'Don't say

that word' his sister says, the carriage

suddenly silent, as if

from some shock

moments before

but either there had been nothing

or it was already

gone, gleaming.


Roy Bayfield's writing has been published in the anthology BritPulp! and magazines including Star*Line and Neon Highway. His blog Walking Home to 50 was an account of a journey between two piers, Southport in North West England and Brighton on the south coast. In it a description of a visit to the anomalous town of "Argleton" brought about international media appearances and the creation of a special beer in a nearby pub. His experience of undergoing heart surgery during this journey also led to the collection Bypass PilgrimRoy is currently writing an account of a visit to the Six Realms of Buddhist Tradition. 

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