Rachel We came up on the tube by district line; we nearly missed our stop. Jumped off at Earl’s Court and running, we just caught the Olympia branch train, a short hop. It put me in mind of the Blitz, the push and shove onto the platforms; the songs, the camaraderie, worried glances at the […]

Roy Bells ringing on the radio, Merry Christmas Everybody, Silent Night; my ma wants a record of carols; I’ll pick one up tonight. I had a wee dance in the kitchen, and she laughed as I shuffled along; the fits have left me limping, and my arm hangs down all wrong. But after all, I’m lucky, […]

Brandy Black and tan, contentious colours, your panting flanks and eager eye. A questing snout quivers to defend; loyalty is your nature, not a means to an end. Drunk, I named you for a drink, But Fido, that tired  joke, is your ideal: faithful, trustworthy, except, perhaps, around a meal. Your greed was your doom, […]

Samuel Winter still, the earth brown between wet lanes and the hedges bare like bones. My thumbs, stiff and rough yet twitch for spring, for nature to swing into its well-worn path. The blush of green will creep as always over the Sperrins, the daylight unbend as the dew retreats to misty morns. More than […]

Brian “Watch our Brian,” our ma shouted from the kitchen, elbow deep in peelings. “No bother” I called, plumping down my bag and coat. But when I made a mug of tea, he’d slipped away for a wee dander on the street. I let him have his play, Not wanting to bother our ma. “Your […]

Rosemary It’s the thirteenth today; touch wood. So long I’ve waited, and it has to be this day? Still, I’m doing what I longed for this last three years. But here’s me, crouched in a toilet, fiddling with wires, and I’m to be a teacher! But the cause is right, and casualties regrettable. Touch wood. […]

Linda Her da would sing to her; two years gone now, but loyalty, that widow maker, lingers. His name, etched in stone and statistics troubles her. So she gives it a shot, puts on the serge green, walks the beat; patrols her home town, still a teen. Green, she sticks her neck out, and the song […]