Saturday Never Comes

His history is bullet-pointed on laminated paper and pinned to his bedroom door. I never knew, after the war, he was a goalkeeper for Somebody United, winning trophies and medals. There’s nothing to suggest this amongst his sparse belongings on his small desk; a fading photograph, some medication and wet-wipes, and a half-empty jar of Everton Mints. We sit on his bed and stare into space, and I notice he has goalkeepers’ hands, huge and agitated, as he runs them along the fraying fabric of his trousers.  I wonder what game he is dreaming of. How would I know? I wasn’t around often enough to be part of his fading memories.

Epitaph

Back to the shoreline, you stroked

with reverent fingers, weathered

wet and cold between the eyes

 

My sisters came and picked my bones

 

Caused salty scratches to the skin

A public nakedness for all to see

Soon forgotten as the earth passed

 

Razored

Above Kite Hill, you searched for the right breeze.

I waited, my manjha ready to cut.

Below, an assembly clapped and cheered

As a million eyes were averted

By sordid headlines and Sunday lattes.

Beggar’s Barm

Two words for rain unveiled a season in rural life.

Juno revealed she was married, where was her ring?

On a blashy day, she showed her face, hid froth

Collected from runny streams in summer showers.

 

Month by month another piece was exposed.

Some parts left obscured by the sun,

Others turned back into their own shadow.

I would love to be the girl she has become.

Geezer

He had the gift of the gab, spoke

Anthologies of pubs and poetry

Beware of his tales and promises

Sooner or later he will let you down

Follow you with an unsettling silence

Freeze you in your own Winter

London

The staggering genius of ordinary lives

Not a thorn between them

You run to catch up with the sun

But she is sinking as she swings

To and fro, on a piece of frayed rope

Until she is lost, in a relative way

You are older, older than wishing time away

Along with all her endearments, frittering

And wasting hours in an offhand style

Collapsed on a wooden bench

We took a second to search for nostalgia

Taking more than a fallen age to come

A name is a name, why tinker with it


Music Credit: Monolog RockstarsThe Bad Wake

Spitfire

A raven’s pinion from death’s immaculate aim.

Out of the cloud she comes, angelic and assertive.

Stand and watch. Listen for the sound of courage.

Watch again, how she falls, noble and concerted.


Sky and water turn her bones, like sun, swaying

Through old reels of black and white movies.

Her yell from a distance was unmistakable.

She was the colour of air, the colour of sea.

Ash

Grandad taught him how to make a coal fire. He would wait to hear the outside coal bunker being rattled, then grab his blanket and run downstairs, taking pole position on the sofa overlooking the fireplace. Something hypnotic floated in a cold morning air. A soft hush from ash, shovelled from under the stool-grate and placed on yesterday’s headlines.  Miner’s hands turned and twisted; paper turned into perfect firelighters. Precision and experience constructed beds of coal and kindling. A strike of a match, the thud of a damper. Golden glows filled the room. He laid back and breathed in the magic.