Ann Drysdale - Between Dryden and Duffy

That’s where I look in every one of them–
Ottakar’s, Hammick’s, Hatchard’s, Waterstone’s.
Finding my books displayed in none of them
Do I descend to star-defeated moans?
Not I!  With an assumed shortsighted stoop on,
I check the coast is clear to right and left.
Then, with a Waitrose bag held slightly open
As if in readiness for petty theft,
I make my hand into a living axe
Which parts the volumes at a single stroke.
Then, with my fingers, I enlarge the cracks
And slip one in, like an inspired joke.
Booksellers do not view this with delight;
It wrecks their paperwork. And serves them right.
 

(From 'Between Dryden and Duffy,' published by Peterloo 2005)