Dream as Tallulah dreaming of Bette Bourne

Artefacts: Obituary, ‘His Name was Tallulah’ , written by Rupert Smith, Gay Times, May 2008. / Article, ‘The Bourne Identity’, written by Rupert Smith, Gay Times, June 2008. 
Shortly after six
One third of the Colville Set
(Iain, off on tour
Granville, not back from the salon yet)
Is nattering out on the terrace
With Bette
Quick words
Catching each other
As the cool London sunlight begins to sink
The tall trees opposite drawing out their lines
Bette trotting home from rehearsals
Running lines to herself still
Muttering under her breath with an American lilt
Not the craziest person on the underground
Channelling Henry
With a cloth bag of groceries
Broccoli, chicken breasts, between her feet 
Tallulah heading out from the house next door
Late-afternoon ships
Coming in and out of harbour
Tallulah striding out in Bette’s footprints
Down to the corner
To surrender herself to the stream of unorderly suits
The after-work gush
Supermarket errands
Feet, elbows surging from the dirt-red buses that loiter
Chug on
Shrieking headlines dropping to the street
Read, used up
Trampled and grubbing in with the chicken boxes
Takeaway cardboard
Cigarette butts
At Ladbroke Grove, she’ll circle east
To play perfect records
Drop balloons
Conjure seamless hours
For the queers
In a sweat
A gleam
To dance themselves away from this reality

Why this scenario?
Wonders Tallulah
Who has been practicing dream-yoga for a few months now
Sometimes gains a whiff of clarity
Hoiks herself up above the swirling images
Notices patterns
This one, she is bemused by
Always happy to see Bette, of course
But there appear to be no pearls of wisdom
Just the regular gossip
Missives from the rehearsal room
Involved descriptions of the new, very handsome, stage-manager
What to expect?
Some fantasies just pass the time
It can be enough, too
There can be a soft meaning in this, too
In the small
In the being

I did an interview, Bette adds
For the show promo
Tallulah pays attention
I was telling them about the gay bubble we used to live in, you know
Then I said
And I can quote myself
It’s been going around in my mind whilst I’ve been trying to learn these fucking lines of Henry’s
I don’t know if it was stupid to say it, cos they’ll print it
I said
You can’t go on like that forever
There comes a time, when
Painful as it may be
You have to have some relationship with the rest of the world
Bette looks at her
Throws up her hands to the dimming early-spring air
There you go
Thinks Tallulah
The nugget
Remembering this moment from earlier
Pulling into focus
The sadness it made in her
The gut-punch rejection she felt as she listened
And smiled with Bette
Didn’t argue
Because she’s beautiful and wise
But on the rattling tube, later
Shook her head to herself
Great earphones over her barnet
Drowning out the shit of the city
In beats and colour