Albert's Bloody Mersey
They must have left in Spring when
We called down the cobbles and through
The rust hollow lampposts and empty houses.
In the cold we wanted to know, all of us,
When it would begin –
The soft drumbeat through the glare
Gliding and shuddering over
Albert's bloody Mersey.
Whilst the bloom stares into this rock
We will sit in the street with our tins
And our pastries, and dream of higher
Fourteen women passed me near the rubble
All their fingernails worn and bruised with grime
The 19th century hanging from their eyes
The sea breaking on their knees.
I listen to the doom clicking and beating
And it ticks with every bite of the apple
And every clout round the ear.
When they break on the rooftops
Nothing will do for us but a drumbeat
In the cold of Spring.
by Dick Thompson, 2009