Posted in Reviews

Review: You Took The Last Bus Home by Brian Bilston

You Took the Last Bus Home by Brian Bilston

Recommended: yes
for people who like silly fun poetry, wordplay, and/or are British or familiar with British culture


With endless wit, imaginative wordplay and underlying heartache, he offers profound insights into modern life, exploring themes as diverse as love, death, the inestimable value of a mobile phone charger, the unbearable torment of forgetting to put the rubbish out, and the improbable nuances of the English language.

Constantly experimenting with literary form, Bilston’s words have been known to float off the page, take the shape of the subjects they explore, and reflect our contemporary world in the form of Excel spreadsheets, Venn diagrams and Scrabble tiles.

This irresistibly charming collection of his best-loved poems will make you question the very essence of the human condition in the twenty-first century.


you took
the last bus home
don’t know how
you got it through the door

you’re always doing amazing stuff

like the time
when you caught that train


This is a rare case where not being British actually detracted significantly from the experience. His style is very playful, and integrates a lot of local knowledge into the humor, so when I didn’t know what a slang word meant, or the significance of some referred person or event or place, I was left kind of muddling on without really “getting” it. I was outside the joke sometimes 😦

Overall the humor and playfulness is plenty to make me smile. There’s so much physical playfulness with the way the poems are presented on the page, and a lot of linguistic playfulness of puns and multiple meanings and homophones and the like.

Let me sum it up: Shel Silverstein for adults. And honestly, kids would probably like some as well, but might not get all of the linguistic nuances.


Reader, traveler, photographer, and always looking to learn!

6 thoughts on “Review: You Took The Last Bus Home by Brian Bilston

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