Kent Street

To the battered pram in a tenement close.
To the rank, winding concrete stairs.
To the empty cardboard boxes.
To the overflowing gutters.

To the pawn shop’s tarnished balls.
To the red-eyed mists of the Barrowlands Bar.
To the barber’s stripes sweetening stale air.
To the shells dangling in the Oyster Bar’s grey netting.

To the slipper shoes shuffling for a fag.
To the button stretched to popping.
To the varicose veined legs.
To the floral headscarf setting rollers.

To the bets on cards, horses and dogs.
To the provy cheque buying time.
To the sixpence for lost bite.
To the silence of a hungry child.

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