Verse Vendor

Autobiography. Quirky encounters with customers
in over a hundred locations throughout Sussex,
mostly rural. Photos by Jan Booker and Frankie Lawrence.

‘I was already imagining what I would wear if, like the ice cream
man, or the cigarette girls at Stella Starr’s club nights, I could roam
about with my very own tray of books. I might at last make better
use of my small coloured beads from the bead shop … the thought
occurred to me that perhaps I should keep a kind of diary …’
~ ‘Introduction’

‘A dozen swans were floating and standing at the water’s edge on
the ramp. A stiff gust blew the hat straight off my head, bowling
its rim on to the smooth concrete ramp, where it bounced up,
smacking a pedestrian swan on its flank before flying into the
river, where it floated for a few seconds like a little toy anchored
boat – then slowly sank.’

~ ‘Littlehampton’

‘ “What you selling?” the thin boy asked, incisively. I explained.
“Made any money?” I said I had failed so far on this occasion.
“You write them?” the chubby boy asked. I nodded.
“D’you feel like a bit of a pleb?” the thin one asked.
“Do I feel like a bit of a pleb?” He nodded peremptorily.
“Yes,” I said, “but I don’t mind.” ‘

~ ’Shoreham’