At Lunchtime: A Story of Love
- When the busstopped suddenly to avoid
damaging a mother and child in the road, the
younglady in the greenhat sitting opposite
was thrown across me,
and not being one to miss an opportunity
I started to makelove
with all my body.
- At first, she resisted saying that it
was tooearly in the morning and too soon
after breakfast and that anyway she found
me repulsive. But when I explained that
this being a nuclearage,the world was going
to end at lunchtime, she tookoff her
greenhat, put her bus ticket into her pocket
and joined in the exercise.
- The buspeople, and therewere many of
them, were shockedandsurprised, and amused-
andannoyed, but when word got around
- that the world was coming to an end at lunchtime,
- they put their pride in their pockets
- with their bustickets and madelove one with the other.
And even the busconductor, feeling left
out climbed into the cab and struck up
some sort of relationship with the driver.
- Thatnight, on the bus coming home,
wewere all alittle embarrassed, especially me
and the younglady in the green hat, and we
all started to say in different ways howhasty
and foolish we had been. Butthen, always
having been a bitofalad, i stood up and
said it was a pity that the world didn’t nearly
end every lunchtime, and that we could always
pretend. And then it happened . . .
- Quick asa frash we all changed partners,
and soon the bus was aquiver with white
mothball bodies doing naughty things.
- And the next day
- and everyday
- In everybus
- In everystreet
- In everytown
- In everycountry
- People pretended that the world was coming
to an end at lunchtime. It still hasn’t.
- Although in a way it has.
- by Roger McGough