Smiling at Strangers


when the world around you is angry

and full of hate,

turn off the internet

and step out.

Maybe you’ll see

a man you recognise as a poet

having a yarn with some homeless blokes,

a woman walking three dalmations,

people practicing tai chi in the park.

Buy some dinner,

something with cheese and potatoes

perhaps a cake to share with work mates,

or a doughnut heavy with custard

and then,

when you go home and wrap

yourself in a blanket to read,

after smiling at strangers


the world around might not seem

quite so bad