The cold came sudden and hard;
the sky bright and clear..
Through the cityís back ways,
metal on metal, heavily
over the tangle of bright rails,
the train shudders and terminates.
( ii )
frost along the leaf
sunlight golden through the frost-
the city swung with lights
The open market is a cornucopia
crammed for a heaving hoi-polloi.
Perched on a roof, a starling,
boot-black beads half-lidded in
harks to the rippling murmurs
that flow from the dark rainbow of
and then above the traffic noise,
from every shelf and ledge,
the thrilling murmuration chimes.
Milk-white, the moon breasts the
profile of the city.
Mother Earth billows up Briggate,
all arse and anorak,
rolls like a laden galleon along
four carriers per fist,
and a family to feed, for Godís
sashays to the music of the
Insulted by poverty, badged with
he musters the last crumbs with
his grimy thumb,
drains to the dregs and dares the
Away for the day,
from the unreasoned rages of the
that lap against his window
like a morning tide of pain;
shits through his letterbox;
tries the latch after midnight;
wants him dead.
The night wind down by the bus
sharp as thorns, cold as malice,
plucks at his trousers,
burns portents in his eyes.
The city falls away, dark grips
I hold my granddaughter tight.
We watch oases of light drift
I marvel at her small hands
pressed against the pane of night,
the miracle of her spread fingers.
My ear to her back
adores the tides of her