Ashfield Crescent

The red-soaked doorstep, number four,
the cracked tree stump, memories of oak riding wind,
of green branches scraping the roof slate;
a dog all black tangles, idle in grass waving over,
its tail moving with the tide;
a cat on its side in the house’s shade,
one eye in periphery, the other drawn black,
one paw twitching, claws stretched;
a feeling of something distant.
A bicycle, bones against the wall,
a back-wheel reflector showing sun gradually,
the gradual bleeding of day in Summer.
A blue pullover, arms wrapped in each other,
a football stirring in time, shoes left at the step -
muddied beyond recognition, rust spreading.
The flowers that sometimes grow, the snowdrops
underneath the fiercest thicket; the rose bushes
reaching for the windows.

The house alone, the first house you see;
the chestnut brick, wind gently taking dust
from the avenues, the traces of wall.
The red door, red as sun on eyelids,
the light that falls through in beams;
the windows wide to take in air, the white curtains
set as ghosts to silently walk.
The higher windows that draw sun,
the wires that run like black veins; the shadow
it stands on the verge of, the perimeter,
the garden lying asleep at its feet.
The dead chimney, the slate-panelled roof
the darkest part; where the birds assemble
as if on a sea-cliff, perch the only concern -
tomorrow the distance.