The machine by the lake pumps out dirty goods into the lake
Looking away was looking at an orange sunset above the lake
So the filth of our town was a machine-sound and not a smell.
A girl of half breasts looks down from a balcony ,at walking men
Looking away meant not thinking of Aldington’s girl of no breasts
With the blooming possibility that she was not a Helen of Sparta
But actually a whore that waited in the Oxford street in the night.*
Looking away was looking at scraps of half conversations
To catch a whiff of talk that comes riding on the night air
With the fragrance of jasmines from passing woman’s hair .
Looking away was not hearing a whole of the conversation.
(* Daisy -A poem by Richard Aldington)