Thursday 13 October 2016


She said that road was closed
When a car fell through the pavement
Because everyone here knows
Rome is built on many layers

Streets on top of streets, centuries deep
I was half-listening to her but I was also
Checking out a guy in tightly fitting jeans
She said, ‘He’s not gay, he’s just Italian.’

Those telltale signs don’t translate here
Even body language was foreign to me
Back home I can suss men out speedily
With successful subtlety but here in Rome

My gaydar flashed left right everywhere
With many layers of miscommunication
So I turned to my trusty iPhone
For some serious investigation

I log on to Grindr; iPhone gay sex finder
Yep, ‘there’s an app for that’
I didn’t come to Rome for this
Random sex isn’t something that I miss

Almost a year without a one-night stand
This certainly wasn’t planned
But it was a welcome surprise
When he popped up on my iPhone screen

(Location 24 metres away)

My friend who grew up here said
She didn’t know anyone who was gay
Yet for two years this hot gay man
Has lived in the apartment above her

So I guess this guy knows how to
Keep his business undercover
But then came me and my poetry
Shamelessly, I expose late-night iniquity

While my friend slept, up the stairs
I crept to meet this man of mystery
If you’d asked before, I’d’ve said for sure
My days of sleeping around were history

But as he opened his apartment door, what I saw
In his wise eyes made me feel differently
How did I feel such heat for a complete stranger?
At 2 a.m. we meet, discreetly, and I feel no danger

We were smoking a spliff and listening to Radiohead
Next thing we were kissing and I was giving him ____
We had instant rapport, I felt so relaxed
There’s nothing I’d change if I could go back

And when he said he was coming to London
Clapham to be precise, my first thought was
To déjà vu this rendezvous would be nice
To walk on pavements cars don’t fall through

To speak loud and public with body language
But then I thought of why I had done this
And what I wanted to achieve. I had nothing
More to give and nothing I wanted to receive

From this ancient city where new technology
Found a tender moment in close proximity
Because now this night is eternal like Rome

And in this poem I can take Leonardo home.

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