Tableau

This was written during what friends have been calling my “window period”, when I would write lots of poems from the perspective of looking through a window. This one was conceived while looking out of a window on the 4th floor of Manchester Central Reference library, it was raining, people were going about their business. It struck me as some kind of play or movie I was observing from a detached perspective…

Tableau

Faces. Pictures. Lines of light
In downpour whipping
Up emotion, splash of feet

Departing to warmth, to love;
Flume of traffic, spark of tyre
On surface, grind on grind

Of movement, drill of cogs.
Just these, within this window
Frame, then blink, snap,

Splice to some new, not entirely
Unconnected scene. But undirected,
Just the ad lib of players

In perpetual rehearsal, reacting
To reactions, flow on flow
Of drama without beginning

Or denouement. Then cut, dismiss,
Leave just this littered
Screen of pavements,

Specks on empty frames,
Over and over flap of reel at end,
The incomplete flicker of rain.

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