Before the Join
He doesn’t say much to anyone
Sits in his rocking chair with a grin
Looks to his wife to explain most things.
That’s the definition of true love
Despite being deaf, his sweetheart’s voice is clear.
She calls questions which trigger memories.
You tell us where we sit now should be a field
With ponds and frogs and newts
You tell us
Half a century ago you walked through the grass at night
Up to Hempdykes
You saw a floating grey cloud drawing near.
You braved the spector. It was a horse.
I wonder if that horses lays under Berkeley field
Mulching as Scotter Road birthed Marsden
And Dewsbury and Holmfirth and Hebden
Haphazard fractals on the horizon
Where there would be no space for horses.
Granny shows us pictures of home.
Half familiar faces stare out
Smiling people, in a simpler time
The backdrop of each photograph missing
The houses, the factories, the roads
Which are synonymous in my mind
With the industrial garden town.
There were no streetlights
That Hempdykes walk always taken in the dark
Making sure your sweetheart got home safe.
The admiration in your voice when you say
She knew the wildflowers, each one by name
Makes me wish I could have seen your Scunthorpe.
Where women went to dances on bicycles
And men knew how to waltz.
High St/Frodingham Road junction. DN15 6EA