I only know a fraction of the city.
Commutes plot characters on maps -
a casual calligraphy of habit,
digital chemtrails in Google red.
My dots connect into an arm, right angle
elbow, sword in fist, clear in my history.
I switch to Street View. Do it right &
you can travel back in time preserved
by the camera car. So! I let past weather
chase me, sky lighter with each click. Now
houses flash amber, crowds brandish flares,
many wear my glyph on armbands, chanting.
Who cares. This is all fake, or far away,
which is the same. I can tell by the pixels.
And if I spend more time online,
I will be late, and I can't be late
again. I scratch my nose behind the wheel,
design a detour so my trail mimics instead
an anchor, or an umbrella, confiden
history will have changed next time I look.
Bohdan Piasecki is a poet from Poland based in Birmingham. A committed performer, he has taken his poems from the upstairs room in an Eastbourne pub to the main stage of the Birmingham Repertory Theatre, from underground Tokyo clubs to tramways in Paris, from a bookshop in Beijing to an airfield in Germany, from niche podcasts to BBC Radio. In the UK, he regularly features at the country's most exciting spoken word nights, festivals, and readings. He enjoys the creative chaos of big field festivals just as much as the composed concentration of literary events.
Bohdan founded the first poetry slam in Poland before moving to the UK to get a PhD in translation studies from the University of Warwick. He has worked as Director of Education on the Spoken Word in Education MA course at Goldsmiths University, and was the Midlands Producer for Apples and Snakes between 2010 and 2017. Since 2012, he has been a regular Visiting Lecturer in Creative Writing at the University of Birmingham. He is Creative Producer for Beatfreeks and sits on the board of the Poetry Translation Centre.