It is winter, icy night outside the ancient terraced house, crisp
and creeping-cold, the road fleeting and the boisterous,
rejoicing revelers invading my room unseen but well heard,
silky-blacked, silk-backed, slick-backed, on the loudbusybarstriken front street.
The houses are sleeping like the dead (though the dead shan’t wake the morrow, in the deep, frosted earth) or sleeping like snoring Grandma
Passed the creaking stairs, behind the thick wooden door.
The chimneys enjoy a smoke, and the street watching in lazy light.
And the people of the long and aging road are lying, dormant, on hold now.
Be still, the birds are in wait, the office-workers, the budget-blunderers, the dole-wallers and money-splashers, equestrians, assistants, cricketers and coppers, the seller and the sold to, convicts, clergy, scrap-men, soldiers, the wary eyed whistleblowers and bleak spinsters. The elderly lie alone, cold and widowed, falling in love in dreams of those long passed, gramophones serenading them with swinging sounds since forgotten. The bachelors lie not alone but feel it, aside women they met but a moment prior. And the sloothing silhouettes of foxes stalk in the brush, and the fallen leaves clump prickled by the spiking spines of a slumbering hedgehog, and the hens in the clucking coops; and the mice creep across grassy planes playing hide and go seek, darting and ducking, amidst the quiet nightly warzone.
You can hear the frost amassing, and the old homes groaning.
Only your eyes are alive to see the bellowing chimney pots washing the black sky with grey, consuming and spreading, smoke. And you stand alone in hearing the working dogs retort with the sky, the primal yowl, where Jack Russell’s, Bull Terriers, Whippets and Grey Hounds, Fox hounds, Patterdales, Lakelands and Border Terriers take wolven shape and warrant the moon and stars to adjourn.
Heed. It is much too late, or early, the day-break behemoth’s begin to crawl blind through dawn, slumped uniform and jangling key and toast crumbed stubble, golden tie pin and tracksuit top, parted as the red sea, racing rats, inhaling bus fare; openmouthed in Citrone’s, rattled morning news; in Pickwick’s cafe shutters exhale the bleak dark and swallow first light. It is genesis in Chester-Le-Street, coagulating evermore, with breakfast offers stuffed down its throat, passed my frosted window pane, sleet and rain, headphones, lit cigarette, black brew two sugars, lichened grave stones and flashing blue lights. It is break of day amongst the pushers of pencils.
Watch. It is discontent, dragging, alone coursing through a bacon stottie; clinging to a dead end rock, aside the cockles and mussels, to be exhumed by an uncomfortable chair and the computer on the blink.
Is this it. Ask. Is this it.