Culture Life Poetry Travel Wine

In vino veritas

Written by Paul Bateman

When in doubt, leave the house. Go travelling. Drink wine.

When I was young and travelling
a pub was a kind of heaven
a world unto itself

I worked in pubs
drank in pubs
dreamed my very best

A pub
on the corner
of a desolate street

Or shining like a castle
on a dark
and distant hill

I loved them all
found them all
welcoming and real

To travel
was to tumble
along opposing lines

From heightened excitement
to loneliness
and boredom

A pub was the space
in between –
timeless, ageless, true

A foaming pint
a bag of crisps
that was home to me

But older now
more fully formed
conscious and contained

I tend to visit wineries
and drink
at cellar doors

I flee
the house
of sodden thought

And take my place
in the open air
where optimism lives

Where vintages
and crop yields
are dependent on the sun

Where anything
that is any good
rises from the ground

I like wine
far too much
to ever drink too much

Wine awakens me –
stops the clock
tames the dog

Gives me back
the dying day
and all that it contains

In vino veritas
in wine
I find the truth –

My better self
a taste for life
I drink therefore I am

Photograph by Shirley Bateman, 2014

About the author

Paul Bateman

I'm a writer from Melbourne, Australia. I love those moments where life and wine intersect in ways that matter. I write on other subjects at

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